The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how criminals need to proceed to launder money and finance terrorism through the use of consulting firms.
A qualitative content analysis of 58 semi-standardized expert interviews with both illegal financial services providers and prevention experts led to the identification of concrete techniques for money laundering and terrorism financing through consulting companies.
Consulting firms could be considered to be “criminals’ best friends”. Terrorists could either buy or set up consulting firms in reputable countries, such as Switzerland or the UK. Subsequently, they could combine real consulting services along with fake clients to cover their illicit activities.
As the findings are based on semi-standardized interviews, they are limited to the 58 interviewees’ perspectives.
The identification of gaps in current prevention mechanisms is meant to provide legislators, compliance officers, law enforcement agencies and intelligence offices with insights into how criminals finance terrorism and launder money.
While the existing literature focuses on simply naming areas that could play a part in money laundering or the financing of terrorism, this paper describes a concrete method. It takes both prevention and criminal perspectives into account.
No external research funding has been received for this study.
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