Money-laundering drug money on this side of the border

Wachovia pays $160 million fine for money-laundering $420 billion in drug money. Avoids criminal prosecutions.

Western Union pays $94 million fine over money-laundering assumed drug and human smuggling money. Avoids criminal prosecutions.

Apparently none of the executives in either company had any inkling of such nefarious goings-on. Else they would have been on it like a crackhead on his pipe, and you can take that to the bank (or money-laundering transit point, whichever is closest.)

Excuse me? $420 billion in money laundering and no one is going to prison? If this happened in a third world country we would snicker about what a corrupt, inept, useless system of justice they have.

As for Western Union, the only indictment was for Bruce Dennis Love, who ran two Western Union stores in Arizona.

According to court documents, both businesses allegedly handled an extraordinarily large volume of Western Union transactions, many of them involving human smugglers and drug dealers. Court documents allege that approximately 80 to 100 percent of all Western Union transactions done by those businesses were intended to pay human smugglers for bringing illegal immigrants into the United States.

Apparently his higher-ups at Western Union must have been having a good snooze through all of this because what other explanation could there possibly be?

The US-Mexico border: where the drug war has soaked the ground blood red.

Drug-related bribery is gnawing deep into US institutions, as Calderon has long alleged. Thomas Frost of the US Department of Homeland Security says that last year the department accused 839 of its own agents of corruption.

A multiplicity of US government agencies, some of them deeply infiltrated by narcos with their deep pockets, are falling over themselves in efforts to bring order to a chaotic situation.

A century ago, President Alvaro Obregon used to say, “There is no [Mexican] general who can withstand a cannonade of 50,000 pesos.” Though the US media are reticent in their references, it is clear that the habit of generalised corruption has moved northward. Dr Tony Payan, of the University of Texas in El Paso, said the effect of a heavy charge of dirty money is the same on both sides of the line.

The narcos have penetrated the US embassy in Mexico City.

75% of drug money profit comes from marijuana. Legalize marijuana and all this goes away. But powerful forces on both sides of the border don’t want it legal, such as corrupt law enforcement, dirty banks and hedge funds who launder the money, and the many others who profit from it.


  • EGrise

    This should be scaring the s**t out of us. I studied public corruption briefly in college, and the one thing everyone agreed on was that once the corruption gets in, it’s almost impossible to get it out and *keep it out.*

    Institutional issues aside, we in the US are fortunate to have a largely uncorrupt police force, or at least a tradition of non-major corruption. It would be an enormous tragedy to lose this over prohibition of some lousy ditch weed.

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