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Definition of Money Laundering, according to the RCMP
2006 Canada / US Organized Crime Threat Assessment
The ability to launder large sums of money is a fundamental requirement for virtually every form of major criminal activity, except violent crime.
money laundering techniques are in common usage, most notably:
the exploitation of the banking systems through wire transfers;
offshore bank accounts; and
THESE TECHNIQUES INCLUDE:
the use of money service businesses such as currency exchanges and wire services;
electronic fund transfers; and
commingling of licit and illicit funds.
The following is an article from the Globe and Mail published in 2005.
Lawyers said key to money laundering
By PAUL WALDIE
News from globeandmail.com
Friday, March 18, 2005
-- Lawyers have become key players in money laundering operations because they are exempt from a federal requirement to report suspicious financial transactions, a senior RCMP officer said yesterday.
"My experience is that it's a widespread problem,"
said Inspector Bill Majcher, who is part of an RCMP white-collar crime unit known as the Integrated Market Enforcement Team, or IMET. "In almost every case we are doing, lawyers are central."
made the comments during a sentencing hearing for Toronto lawyer Simon Rosenfeld,
who was convicted of money laundering last month. Mr. Rosenfeld was one of about 55 Canadian and U.S. citizens arrested in 2002 as part of an RCMP-FBI sting called Bermuda Short, which exposed a raft of stock market manipulation and money laundering scams.
Crown prosecutors are seeking an unprecedented sentence of up to seven years in jail for Mr. Rosenfeld because he used his position as a lawyer to facilitate illegal transfers.
At yesterday's hearing, Insp. Majcher described how he met Mr. Rosenfeld during the undercover operation by posing as a representative of a Colombian drug cartel.
Insp. Majcher said Mr. Rosenfeld was one of three Canadian lawyers who agreed to help him move millions of dollars into investments that would hide their illegal origin.
At one point, Insp. Majcher testified that he gave Mr. Rosenfeld one dollar and asked him: "Do I now have solicitor-client privilege?" Mr. Rosenfeld replied: "Yes, you do."
Insp. Majcher said Mr. Rosenfeld told him it was "twenty times" easier to launder money from Canada than the United States.
He was also told during the investigation that five lawyers in Vancouver regularly laundered $200,000 a month through trust accounts in return for a 7-per-cent commission.
Other lawyers used offshore accounts, stock market scams and foundations to hide illicit cash, Insp. Majcher testified
In an interview outside the court, Insp. Majcher said police are constantly coming across lawyers at the centre of a variety of investigations. "We are seeing, in almost every case we are doing, there's a willful blindness or negligence on the part of a number of lawyers that have participated with the stock promoters
He added that RCMP Commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli
wants the force to focus more on commercial crime. "He's been really pushing the RCMP to aggressively start protecting the economy as a national priority."
Insp. Majcher said lawyers should no longer be excluded from rules that require financial institutions, casinos, real estate agents and insurers to report all transactions over $10,000 and any suspicious transactions.
The federal government introduced those rules in 2001 as part of a crackdown on money laundering.
Lawyers were exempted after a successful court challenge found the measure violated solicitor-client privilege.
"The majority of lawyers are honest in this country and they are frustrated by the difficulties [police] have because many of these lawyers are victim investors as well or they represent victims," Insp. Majcher said.
In a report last fall, Auditor-General Sheila Fraser pointed out several weaknesses in Canada's efforts to combat illicit money flows and said excluding lawyers from the reporting rules is "widely recognized as a serious gap in the legislation."
The following article is four (4) years later after Rosenfeld was convicted for money laundering.
The Crown rather than ask for three (3) years for sentencing, it wants the court to sentence Rosenfeld to five (5) years, which is completely laughable, considering the crime.
Be Tougher on Corrupt Lawyers, Court told
Crown Seeks Longer Term for Money Launderer
Adrian Humphreys, National Post
Published: Monday, March 09, 2009
Lawyers who exploit their special legal status to help drug traffickers enjoy their profits should be punished more harshly than other criminals,
the Ontario Court of Appeal heard on Monday.
In a plea to maintain the integrity of a profession disgraced by recent convictions against prominent lawyers for high-value money laundering, the Public Prosecution Service of Canada is asking the court to boost sentences meted out to corrupt lawyers.
"Lawyers who exploit the privileges of their profession to launder money ... are in a class of their own and should be punished more severely," says a government brief argued in court on Monday.
"All lawyers are entrusted with certain privileges which can be exploited to conceal crimes. General deterrence requires that lawyers who breach society's trust by exploiting these privileges be punished more severely."
The argument was made at the appeal of Simon Rosenfeld, a Toronto lawyer who mocked Canada's justice system - saying it was "20 times safer" for a lawyer to launder money in Canada and that prison terms are light - while he was secretly taped counting drug money in a joint RCMP-FBI investigation, code named Operation Bermuda Short.
He was arrested in 2002 and in 2005 a jury convicted him on two counts of money laundering and one count of attempted possession of proceeds of crime.
The government is seeking to increase Rosenfeld's sentence from three years to five; Rosenfeld also appealed both his conviction and sentence, seeking a reprieve.
The special status of lawyers in money laundering was highlighted in the case after an undercover RCMP officer, posing as a representative of a Colombian cocaine cartel, handed Rosenfeld a US$1 bill over dinner in a Miami restaurant and asked if that meant they now had a solicitor-client relationship; Rosenfeld said: "Yes."
"Money laundering by lawyers is a crime that is particularly difficult to detect," government lawyer Jason Wakely argued in court on Monday.
"The most obvious example of this is solicitor-client privilege, which can frustrate investigation into a lawyer's suspected criminal activities, or can be used by a lawyer to cloak the activities of his criminal associates."
Further, lawyers are the only financial intermediary exempted from the currency reporting requirements in the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act, an exemption lawyers won in a series of court challenges by law societies against the government.
Not only should lawyers face harsher sanction if convicted, money laundering itself should be treated more seriously by the courts, said Mr. Wakely, a lawyer in the federal prosecutor's anti-organized crime unit.
"Money laundering is an integral part of the international drug trade," he said. "It is indispensable to the operation and indiscernible in culpability."
And yet convicted money launderers typically get far lower sentences than drug couriers or traffickers, he said. Money launderers, and corrupt lawyers in particular, need to face a hefty penalty to offset the lucrative rewards of the illegal act.
"The sentence imposed in this case is manifestly inadequate to denounce the seriousness of the offence and to deter like-minded offenders."
In 2002, Rosenfeld flew to Miami to meet a man who he believed was working for the large-scale Colombian cocaine traffickers but was, in reality, an RCMP officer.
Rosenfeld's purported connections in the underworld were on display throughout the undercover operation.
During his meetings with the undercover agent, Rosenfeld said he could set up a meeting with Vito Rizzuto, the powerful Mafia boss from Montreal, to discuss the sale of 3,000 kilograms of cocaine, and arrange to have the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club provide "muscle."
The undercover officer said he had large quantities of "coke money" to launder and Rosenfeld said he was happy to help on two conditions: he was paid a 12% commission and he would only pick up cash in Canada, not the United States.
He later settled on 10% commission and the undercover agent twice brought him a bag of cash - one containing $250,000 Canadian and the other US$190,000 - to get into the banking system so it would appear to be legitimate income.
"This is all coke money," the undercover officer told Rosenfeld.
Anthony Moustacalis, Rosenfeld's lawyer, argued that his client's Charter rights were breached because wiretaps in Canada were obtained using information generated by the RCMP in the U.S. using America's more liberal wiretap provisions.
In seeking a reduced sentence, he asked the judges to consider Rosenfeld's personal circumstances as the son of Holocaust survivors who was born in occupied post-war Europe.
"Mr. Rosenfeld is a psychologically damaged person who has failed in many financial endeavours that led to a bankruptcy and other difficulties," he said. Alcohol abuse and low self esteem were also factors in his client's behaviour.
Rosenfeld, who is 63, had been free on $1.95-million bail since 2005 after spending less than a week in jail after his conviction, but turned himself over to police on Sunday night, as is customary prior to an appeal hearing. He is currently in Toronto's Don jail.
He has promised not to work as a lawyer pending the outcome of his appeal, according to the Law Society of Upper Canada.
"This is difficult for him. It is humiliating," said Mr. Moustacalis after court.
Mr. Moustacalis argued that Rosenfeld has been free on bail for four years pending this appeal without incident.
That may not carry much weight; during the undercover operation, Rosenfeld bragged that he was a master of delay when it came to court proceedings.
The panel of three judges effectively dismissed Rosenfeld's plea for his conviction to be overturned and reserved their decision on sentencing.
The law society, the Canadian Bar Association and the Federation of Law Societies of Canada all declined to comment on the government's position on corrupt lawyers.
Be tougher on corrupt lawyers
A note by J4Y on the article above of Paul Waldie
in 2005, who interviewed inspector Bill Majcher, who is part of an RCMP white-collar crime unit known as the Integrated Market Enforcement Team
According to inspector Bill Majcher, he claimed in 2005 that, "five lawyers in Vancouver regularly laundered $200,000 a month through trust accounts in return for a 7-per-cent commission
Anyone given so much leeway and trust
wihtout anyone checking on them, will eventually be involved in proceeds of crime and this includes lawyers, thus 5 lawyers can hardly be accurate considering the amount of solicitors British Columbia have for members and considering how many of them are hungry for money and for power.
of commission on a transaction of $100,000 is a nice chunk of money, especially since it requires just a stroke of a pen and the deal is done for the lawyer who facilates the transaction and for his client.
In effect the Canadian Bar Association
and provincial Law Societies are itself a criminal organization, who are sound proof from being investigated by law enforcement.
A perfect example is with Martin Wirick,
a former lawyer, who stole well over $70 million dollars
On Friday, October 20, 2006,
another article, on the issue of dirty money was published. The writer reported on the Conservative Government
responding to a report from Canada's financial intelligence agency that terrorists funnelled $256 million
through the country with a bill to toughen laws against money-laundering and terrorism financing.
Given the role Canada plays regarding criminal organizations, it came to no surprise when the Federal government, with its new legislation, removed a provision that would have forced lawyers to alert authorities to suspicious transactions by their clients. The move or lack thereof made by the Federal Government was another victory for law groups across the country, which won an injunction against the new legislation clause. The Canadian Bar Association
sucessfully argued that such clause would threatened solicitor-client-privilege
As the reporter of the Vancouver Sun stated: "This leaves a gaping hole in the terrorist financing regime since lawyers often act as facilitators for money-laundering, setting up shell companies and serving as conduits for transfers to offshore tax havens beyond the reach of regulators. What all this amounts to then is a public relations exercise to demonstrate to the worldwide intelligence community that Canada takes these matters seriously."
The Law Societies across Canada
were able to rob the citizens of Canada with no recourse to justice of any kind.
In the matter of PAUL H. CODY
the subject featured on this site -- his lawyers can continue doing easy transactions for him while collecting their 7% or more on their commission.
The Law Society of British of Columbia (LSBC)
is attempting to bring their criminal organization to a higher level by trying to get the provincial and federal government's approval regarding MANDATORY E-FILING AT THE LAND TITLE OFFICE (LTO)
without legislating properly.
By virtue of the critical issue of E-Filing at the LTO, a CITATION
was issued on September 21, 2009, by the Law Society of B.C.(LSBC)
against retired member ANTHONY JASICH,
who alleges that CIBC and CIBC Mortgages Inc. and lawyers involved with the Financial Institution, The LSBC's goal was to intimidate Mr. Jasich's into a plea bargain, wherein he would cease and desist in acting for his client, Mr. Harold Gaffney. The for the purpose, inter alia, of protecting criminals within their own organization.
to the point where Mr. Jasich attempted to discredit a who practiced law in B.C. for 50 years, because he is a dissenter
on the criminal conduct of some lawyers involved in money laundering.
Consider that, the headquarters for Money Laundering
are The Law Societies
across Canada and any lawyers and members of the bar, retired or otherwise, who dare to dissent, are treated very harshly and usually get disbarred or pay a heavy financial fine.
Consider that person(s) employed in Canada, with decision making positions, are lawyers placed in public bodies, including large and small Unions. For example, the Commissioner of the RCMP is a lawyer by the name of Willian Eliott.
Consider in the meantime that unemployment rates in British Columbia in 2009-2010
is well into 20%
of the population and many are on starvation wages, the lowest minimum wage in the country. It is no better in the rest of Canada.
Consider that since the financial crisis on Wall Street in 2008-2009,
involving Financial Institutions, the properties in British Columbia, unlike the rest of Canada, have gone up in value between 10% to 40 %.
Consider each and every criminal around the world need to park their dirty money into property and British Columbia is a haven for money launderers around the world.
This is why the Law Society of British Columbia,
who got the rest of the law groups to follow suit with their injunction in 2001, in not reporting criminal activity, are attempting the same with MANDATORY E-FILING AT THE LTO
without the requirement of signatures by the buyers and sellers of the immovable property. E-FILING
equals OneMove Technology
which advertises lawyers and notaries, practicing e-conveyance
, in the province of British Columbia only.
It is important to note that first the Law Groups got an injunction from the courts, in 2001, to not report crimes related to money laundering from proceeds of crime, and second step is since dirty money is usually always parked in property, the lawyers want complete monopoly at the Land Title Office.
It is the perfect crime against citizens of this country and around the world.
Thus any lawyers daring to disagree publicly on any aspects of criminal activity from within the law society, are given the axe. Such for example what the LSBC is attempting to achieve with ANTHONY JASICH.
The B.C. and Federal Government has given the appearance that it is a party to this criminal activity run by a cabal of lawyers, by, inter alia, raising taxes every year.
A person who is trying to stay financially stable cannot cope for example with the 14 % HST/ GST
taxes that was imposed on its citizens, without debate, in 2009 and put into force in 2010.
Many home-owners are forced to sell their property in order to live a stable family life.
Money laundering from proceeds of crime
is a destabilizing effect on families around the country, especially on children having to move from their home because their parents no longer can afford to pay the taxes and/or mortgage and the rents. The only ones able to afford some luxury are criminals, including lawyers.
Consider the income of families in Canada has not kept up with the rise in living costs, thus the Provincial and Federal government's main industry is money laundering from proceeds of crime. Canada would not survive otherwise and it is bound to fail sooner than later.
It is important to note that the USA,
unlike Canada, appears to not have the same rule of solicitor-client privilege
when it comes to the crime of fraud. This means that criminals from the USA, like PAUL H. CODY
would have a hard time parking their dirty money in the USA without being eventually caught. This is why CODY
is in Vancouver BC, as an illegal immigrant, overlooked by the authorities.
For instance, the crime-fraud exception can render the privilege moot when communications between an attorney and client are themselves used to further a crime or fraud. In Clark v. United States,
the US Supreme Court writes that "A client who consults an attorney for advice that will serve him in the commission of a fraud will have no help from the law. He must let the truth be told
The crime-fraud exception also does not require that the crime or fraud discussed between client and attorney be completed to be triggered. US Courts have not yet conclusively ruled how little knowledge an attorney can have of the underlying crime or fraud before the privilege detaches and the attorney's communications or requisite testimony become admissible.
In the case of the criminal lawyers in the trial of Paul Bernardo and Karla Leanne Homolka
by the names of Ken Murray and Carolyn MacDonald.
The lawyers hid crucial evidence from the jury and Crown, and claimed that they were only willing to release the evidence (tapes showing Bernardo killing his victims) if the Crown let them cross-examine Homolka
in the anticipated preliminary hearing. The hearing was never held and as a result the lawyers stood by their solicitor-client privilege,
until the law society ordered them to release the tapes.
Nothing has changed in so far as client-solicitor privilege.
It is not sacrosanct. There is a limit.
It begs the question in the meantime, regarding money laundering in Canada,
as to why the USA,
who has been dictating this country for numerous years on its different policies, is not demanding for stronger laws with money laundering from proceeds of crime?
In effect, why would the USA
not intervene in matters dealing with terrorists and dirty money and not let lawyers in Canada have their cake and eat it too?
Perhaps dirty money from criminal organizations must be parked somewhere, other than the USA, and Canada seems like the perfect haven, close to home, for the criminal in the USA.
By the way if anyone wonders what the sentence was for lawyer Simon Rosenfeld, please read the following:
Judge Adds 2 Years
Adrian Humphreys, National Post
Monday, April 20, 2009
A Toronto lawyer who abused his legal status to hide his role in the international drug trade has had his prison sentence substantially increased, sending a stern warning to a privileged profession that is often removed from police scrutiny.
The Ontario Court of Appeal has sentenced Simon Rosenfeld, 63, to five years in prison for money laundering instead of the three he received at trial, citing his status as a lawyer as a "significant aggravating factor" worthy of harsher punishment.
"Those privileged to practice law take on a public trust in exchange for that privilege and the many advantages that come with it," wrote Justice David Doherty for the court. (J4Y notes that the words of the judge may appear harsh but it is another act 2 scene 9 proposition)
"He was ready and willing to abuse these specific privileges available to him because of his status as a lawyer to enhance his money-laundering services. [Rosenfeld's] willingness to prostitute his legal services and abuse the special privileges associated with them are significant aggravating features of his conduct." (J4Y notes that what the judge said, "He was ready and willing to abuse these specific privileges available to him" is the only part of his judgment that is truly sincere.)
The court felt Rosenfeld's sentence should be raised, in part, to balance the unique position of lawyers in not having to report large financial transactions undertaken on behalf of their clients to the government, unlike bankers, stockbrokers and most other professionals. (J4Y notes that the judge ought to have also ordered payment back of money, as in the courts in the USA do with fraudsters).
Further, Rosenfeld flagrantly abused solicitor-client privilege -- a sacred principle of the legal profession that makes many conversations with a lawyer private--by knowingly using that cloak of secrecy to hide criminal activity. (J4Y notes that what the judge was saying is that Rosenfeld should have kept his mouth shut and keept the principle of OMERTA).
Rosenfeld also drew particular ire because of his mockery of Canada's justice system -- saying it was "20 times safer" for a lawyer to launder money in Canada than in the United States and that prison terms here are notably light. (J4Y notes that Rosenfeld was at least honest part of the time, since he exposed the Canadian Justice system for what it is - A DISGRACE.
He made the remarks while he was counting a huge pile of cash, which he thought was drug money but was, in fact, part of an elaborate police sting.
The sting was a joint RCMP/FBI investigation code named Operation Bermuda Short.
Over dinner at a restaurant in Miami in 2002, an RCMP undercover officer, posing as a representative of a Colombian drug cartel, handed Rosenfeld a US$1 bill and asked if that meant they now had a solicitor-client relationship; Rosenfeld said it did. The officer then laid out what he wanted: the cartel needed to move $3-million a month in illegal drug proceeds into the banking system so it would appear to be legitimate income.
Rosenfeld offered to do it for a 12% commission. The officer offered 5% and they settled on 8%, with Rosenfeld adding one condition--he would only handle drug money in Canada because he felt it was much safer here.
He backed up his incriminating words with illegal action. The officer met him in Toronto and gave him $250,000 in Canadian cash. Rosenfeld laundered the money through a series of transactions and bank accounts in the names of shell corporations, eventually forwarding it to the Florida bank accounts controlled by the supposed drug cartel. A few weeks later, the officer gave
Rosenfeld $190,000 in U. S. cash, which likewise was routed to the Florida accounts.
"This is all coke money," the undercover officer told Rosenfeld, who earned about $43,000 in commission on the two transactions. (He was later ordered to pay this back as a fine. He has not yet done so.)
He was arrested in 2002 and in 2005 was convicted of two counts of laundering the proceeds of crime and one count of attempting to possess money obtained by crime.
His appeal took four years to be heard, during which he was free on $1.95-million bail.
"Lawyers are duty-bound to protect the administration of justice and enhance its reputation within their community. Criminal activity by lawyers in the course of performing functions associated with the practice of law in its broadest sense, has exactly the opposite effect," wrote Justice Doherty.
"Lawyers like [Rosenfeld] who choose to use their skills and abuse the privileges attached to service in the law not only discredit the vast majority of the profession, but also feed public cynicism of the profession. In the long run, that cynicism must undermine public confidence in the
At Rosenfeld's appeal hearing in March, prosecutor Jason Wakely argued that lawyers who become criminals should, as a whole, be treated more harshly by the courts to counter-balance lawyers' status as the group most difficult for police to investigate.
The court of appeal did not go that far.
"I do not adopt Crown counsel's sweeping condemnation of sentences imposed on lawyers for this kind of offence. I do, however, accept the submission that in the specific circumstances of this case, a significantly longer jail term was required," wrote Justice Doherty.
Nevertheless, Lorne Sossin, a law professor at the University of Toronto and academic director for the school's Centre for the Legal Profession, said the case should serve as both a sentencing guideline for future lawyer-criminals and as a cautionary tale within the legal community.
MARTIN WIRICK SENTENCED TO 7 YEARS IN 2009
Terrorism and dirty money
The Sucess of Lawyers in Keeping Money Laundering Hidden from Authorities
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