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U.S. Treasury Breaks Up Mexican Drug Money Laundering in Panama

Article Summary:

The U.S. Treasury has shut down a Panamanian money laundering operation which smuggled money from Mexican cartels and Columbia out of Panama and Columbia. The defendants, according to a statement from the Treasury Department are Colombian-Lebanese citizens Jorge Zouheir Mohammad Fadlallah Cheaitelly and nine individuals and 28 entities in Colombia, Panama, Lebanon, and Hong Kong. The Panama operation consisted of a business network of exchange stores, appliance stores, luggage, fashion and an import and export company in Panama to move money throughout the world.  

Photo Credit: Mexico CNN

Original Article Text From Mexico CNN via Google Translate :

EU Network Dismantles Laundering Mexican Drug Money in Panama
The U.S. Treasury Department in the U.S., along with two Colombian government offices have fined several companies for laundering money from Mexican cartels and Colombia. 

The defendants, according to a statement from the Treasury Department are Colombian-Lebanese citizens Jorge Zouheir Mohammad Fadlallah Cheaitelly and alias  El Khansa,  nine individuals and 28 entities in Colombia, Panama, Lebanon, and Hong Kong are also cited by collaborating with drug traffickers. 

Both were designated as Specially Designated Narcotics Traffickers (SDNT for its acronym in English), so the U.S. is forbidden for any financial or commercial operations with the subjects in question, while their assets are frozen in the United States, according to a Department the Treasury.

“Fadlallah Cheaitelly Jorge runs a large network of money laundering based in Panama and Colombia, with links to Mexico, Lebanon and Hong Kong,” said Adam J. Szubin, director of the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

“By designating these individuals and companies, we are exposing a large network of international asset washing, ejecting the international financial system, and eliminating their ability to launder drug money through a global network of support for cartels the drug from Mexico and Colombia “he added.

The Treasury also said that these criminals operate with rich media and various fake companies to launder drug trafficking around the world.

The financial laundering network Cheaitelly includes several exchanges, appliance stores, luggage, fashion and an import and export company in Panama.   

In 2010, the Treasury Department barred U.S. commercial and financial transactions with seven Mexicans identified as leaders of the criminal group  La Familia Michoacana .

Nazario and drew  The Chayo  Moreno Gonzalez and Jose de Jesus  El Chango  Méndez Vargas as two of the main “specially designated narcotics traffickers” along with five of his lieutenants.

Violations of the law against drug lords known as  Law  Kingpin  can be punished with fines of between one and 10 million dollars and up to 30 years in prison.

The Drug Enforcement Agency of the United States (DEA), the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE acronym in English) and the Police Department of New York City assisted in the detection of laundering network.

Link to Original Article:

From Mexico CNN

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