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Old 04-07-2016, 03:03 AM
UDS is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Australia
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I take your point about bearer bonds. But the OP's question isn't confined to the US; it's possible that they still enjoy a bit more popularity in some parts of the world. Either way, laundering bearer bonds may be relatively easy, but it's going to be pretty rare nowadays.

Your general point about the difficulty of laundering large amounts of securities is perfectly true. And in fact because laundering is difficult it is also expensive. The amount you'll end up with after successfully laundering securities will be a fraction of their face value.

Take the "use as collateral for a loan" trick. A very big loan will naturally attract a very high degree of scrutiny, so you will want to enter into a series of small loans, with a variety of small and not very highly resourced lenders, operating in different markets. So right there you've got a lot of expense and you need a lot of local connections in different cities,a nd you have to pay different people to help you with your different faked identities. You'll need plausible back-stories to tell the lenders about why you are taking out the loan; faking the evidence for those costs money. And everyone who helps you is taking a significant risk, and expects to be paid generously. Even if all goes smoothly, if you're using the securities as collateral you won't be able to borrow the full value of the securities - banks like their margins of comfort. Plus there are the ordinary fees and expenses and costs and , yes, taxes that would arise even if this were an entirely genuine and legitimate loan. So the overheads mount up dramatically, very quickly.