PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to advance debate and prompt new strategies substantially to improve the capacity to disrupt serious profit-motivated crime.Design/methodology/approachUsing interdiction rates (the proportion of criminal funds seized or forfeited) as an interim proxy effectiveness indicator, this article challenges elements of the dominant anti-money laundering/counter-financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) narrative, and reflects on policy effectiveness and outcomes.FindingsInterdiction rates in jurisdictions surveyed hardly constitute a rounding error in the accounts of profit motivated criminal enterprises. The current AML/CFT model appears almost completely ineffective in disrupting illicit finances and serious crime.Research limitations/implicationsWith such research at an early stage, some data are poorly substantiated and methodological inconsistencies rife.Practical implicationsFor policy interventions with a reasonable prospect for crime not to pay, beyond rhetoric, frank evaluation of results and a potential step-change in policy, regulatory and enforcement vision and capability, may be required.Originality/valueScholars have exposed a paucity of meaningful links between AML/CFT controls and crime and terrorism prevention, yet the dominant narrative persists largely unchecked. This paper examines components of that narrative in the context of scholarship on “bullshit”.
Journal of Financial Crime – Emerald Publishing
Published: May 8, 2018
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