February 19, 2011

Money changer blacklisted over drug links

Money changer blacklisted over drug links
The US Treasury Department blacklisted a currency exchange in Afghanistan yesterday that it said is a major money-laundering vehicle for narcotics trafficking organisations.
It placed the New Ansari Money Exchange in Kabul on its list of specially designated nationals, along with 15 affiliated individuals and entities.
The move prohibits US persons from transactions with them and seeks to freeze any assets they may have under US
The Treasury said New Ansari’s network has laundered money from heroin, opium and morphine trade in Afghanistan for the previously blacklisted traffickers Haji Azizullah Alizai and the Haji Juma Khan
“The New Ansari network is yet another example of money launderers exploiting legitimate financial systems to launder their ill-gotten gains, including illicit drug proceeds, as part of their criminal enterprise,” US Drug Enforcement Administration Michele Leonhart said in a statement.
The action is part of the Treasury Department’s efforts to use authorities under the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act to target the financial support networks of drug traffickers worldwide.
It has blacklisted more than 900 businesses and individuals linked to 87 drug kingpins since June 2000. Reuters


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