The FinCEN Advisory "...is a recurring series designed for the financial, regulatory and law enforcement communities. Subsequent advisories will describe trends and developments related to money laundering and financial crime." In this issue of FinCEN: "Drug sales in the United States are estimated by the Office of National Drug Control Policy to generate $57.3 billion annually, and most of these transactions are in cash. Through concerted efforts by the Congress and the Executive branch, laws and regulatory actions have made the movement of this cash a significant problem for the drug cartels. America's banks have effective systems to report large cash transactions and report suspicious or unusual activity to appropriate authorities. As a result of these successes, the placement of large amounts of cash into U.S. financial institutions has created vulnerabilities for the drug organizations and cartels. Efforts to avoid reporting requirements by structuring transactions at levels well below the $10,000 limit or camouflage the proceeds in otherwise legitimate activity are continuing. Drug cartels are also being forced to devise creative ways to smuggle the cash out of the country."
Financial Crimes Enforcement Network: http://www.fincen.gov
FinCEN Advisory (November 1997), iss.9