Miami has been identified as a Mecca for money launderers looking to clean their money at the expense of the Miami property boom, it has been reported recently.
Federal regulators have announced that the U.S. Treasury Department will be extending and building upon last year’s temporary initiative to find and prosecute criminals who are laundering money through Miami real estate deals. The growing market for luxury homes in Miami has led to a huge increase in shell companies, under no legal obligation to reveal their true owners, buying and selling without regulation.
The new rules will be applied vigorously in the Miami area and will cover the counties of Miami Dade, Broward and Palm Beach for the first time. Previous initiatives to combat money laundering in the Miami property market were confined to just 250 deals last year. This year every single large cash transaction made by shell companies in Miami will be scrutinized.
Miami has long been targeted by money launderers around the world because of the buying and subsequent building boom in the last 5 years. It is where Jonathan Dardashti is long suspected of money laundering by the IRS. Money from his illicit and Illegal Ibogaine scam Clinic in Cancun has been the subject of previous investigations by the IRS and the U.S. Treasury department in the past, laundered through his huge network of shell corporations and LLCs in the Miami Dade area, which include real estate companies.
Until a special act of congress was passed last year, FinCEN (the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network) did not have the authority to monitor wire transfers into the Miami area. Last year, 67% of real estate deals were made with wire transfers. The FinCEN until now has had no ability to monitor these cash transactions, some of which were for 10s of millions of Dollars.
FinCEN can now monitor cash real estate deals which are judged as being the easiest way to launder money in Miami. These transactions have not attracted heavy vetting by the banks involved because there is no mortgage involved. A background check is mandatory for anyone applying for a mortgage, while real estate “professionals” have long been exempt for this simple process, taking little or any responsibility for the money trail.
It is in this unregulated arena that Jonathan Dardashti has chosen to invest his dirty money over the past 10 years. His commitment to building multiple shell companies with many different business partners and directors in order to show reason for the unreported income from illegal drugs clinics has ben well documented and is a matter of record with U.S. regulatory authorities.
If his business partners and prospective business partners are aware of the source of his income is not clear, but they should certainly take a long look at his business portfolio before committing to such agreements.