The Dictator's Dirty Millions

Switzerland's banking regulator has an effective weapon to enforce the many new regulations it has put in place over the past decade: public embarrassment. Take the case of former Nigerian President Sani Abacha. At the end of 1999, the Swiss government froze all assets identified as being linked to Abacha, about $660 million, and the Swiss Federal Banking Commission began a full-scale inquiry into how and why the money had come to Switzerland. The regulator‚s report, issued in August 2000, was damning˜to banks. While five institutions had behaved according to Swiss money-laundering laws and procedures, six were sharply criticized for "serious...

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