Laundering blast from the past: Operation Bid Rig

Remember when news broke in 2009 about Operation Bid Rig in New Jersey? It included lurid tales of sales of body parts, corrupt politicians and religious leaders, and cardboard cereal boxes stuffed with tens of thousands of dollars of laundered money.

What turned out to be one of the biggest fraud and money laundering schemes in New Jersey history is in the news again—this time because money launderer and former government informant Solomon Dwek was released from a federal prison after serving 30 months of a six-year sentence.

Followers of financial news likely remember the fantastic story that unraveled as details about the government sting and the spider web of criminal enterprises came to light.

The money-laundering trail included connections to Brooklyn, Israel, the Jersey Shore, and Switzerland, according to New York Times archives. Among the 44 people arrested were three mayors from New Jersey cities, state assemblymen, and several rabbis.

The corruption included bank fraud, ponzi schemes, bribery of public officials, and a rampant “culture of influence peddling.” In the money laundering enterprise, Dwek would make large contributions to charities of complicit rabbis and then get those contributions back in cash minus a ‘service’ fee.

Those details are just trivia now that nearly six years have passed, but stories like these highlight the challenges that financial institutions face in terms of AML Compliance and the tracking of Politically Exposed Persons.

Even with careful attention to CDD and good Compliance plans in place, organized criminal conspiracies and the ever-more sophisticated technology-assisted methods of money laundering require equally sophisticated and technology-assisted methods of Compliance. That is why AML Partners has invested so much effort into transforming CDD collection, sanctions screening, and behavioral monitoring into web-based integrated tools that can provide data on demand, track and signal unexpected behaviors, and easily rate and re-rate risk. To learn more about our high-tech answers to your Compliance questions, investigate our SURETY Suite of Compliance Products.

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