CICAD: Anti-money Laundering


CICAD: Anti-money Laundering


CICAD: Anti-money Laundering


CICAD: Anti-money Laundering


CICAD: Anti-money Laundering

International conventions and organizations that deal with money laundering


The 1988 UN Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances recognized that money laundering was the power train of criminal enterprises engaged in drug trafficking, especially because they used global banking operations to exploit breaches in international laws and enforcement to mobilize their financial resources. This activity also extended the repercussions of criminal activity into countries that were not direct participants in the production, trafficking or abuse of illegal substances because the flow millions of dollars distorted local economies and corrupted government and banking officials. The treaty drafters stated that they were:

"…determined to deprive persons engaged in illicit traffic of the proceeds of their criminal activities and thereby eliminate their main incentive for so doing."

In 1998, the United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) approved a Political Declaration and Action Plan against Money Laundering which provided more specific provisions on the issues involved. In addition, a framework of other international treaties and conventions underpinned this initiative:

International Institutions

The Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF) is an international policy-making body on the issue. The G-7 Summit of 1989 created the FAFT and a year later it issued the Forty Recommendations on Money Laundering. Over the years, changes were made to reflect increased concern about international terrorism and other dynamics so  the document is now called The FATF Recommendations: International Standards on Combating Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism and Proliferation (PDF, 1.7 mb).

The FATF currently has 34 members and has its headquarters in Paris, France. CICAD is a recognized FAFT international observer.

The Egmont Group is the coordinating body for the international group of financial intelligence units (FIUs). It was formed to promote and enhance international cooperation in anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing efforts. It is named after the Egmont Arenberg Palace in Brussels, where the founding members met in 1995. The Group, with a membership that has now grown to 116 FIUs or equivalent agencies, has recently established a permanent secretariat, located in Toronto, to support its work.

Periodically, member states must go through a formal review procedure established by the Egmont Group in order to be recognized as complying with the Egmont requirements for a FIU.

The International Money Laundering Information Network (IMoLIN) is an Internet-based network assisting governments, organizations and individuals in the fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism. It has current listings of internatoinal norms, online references and links to other organizations.

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) maintains related programs on corruption money laundering, organized crime and terrorism prevention.

Inter-American Counterparts

Because of the nature of money laundering, inter-governmental coordination is crucial to keeping up with trends. CICAD’s Money Laundering Control Section has played a lead role in drafting model legislation and recommendations of good practices; setting up, equipping and training the staffs of financial intelligence units (FIUs) in all Member States in South and Central America; training judges, prosecutors and police investigators in prosecuting money laundering cases, and providing technical assistance.


CICAD’s Money Laundering Section also cooperates with the Inter-American Committee Against Terrorism (CICTE) by jointly holding workshops on the nature of money laundering practices in terrorism networks and how law enforcement can investigate these operations.

The Financial Action Group of Latin America (GAFILAT) is a regional intergovernmental organization that brings together 17 countries in South America, Central America, North America and the Caribbean to prevent and combat moneyGAFILAT laundering, financing of terrorism and financing of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (LA/TF/FPADM), through the commitment to continuously improve national policies for the prevention and fight against such issues, as well as to deepen the cooperation mechanisms among member countries.

It was formally created as Financial Action Group of South America (GAFISUD) on December 8, 2000 in Cartagena de Indias, Colombia, through the Memorandum of Understanding constituting the group signed by the representatives of the governments of nine countries: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil , Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay. Subsequently, Mexico (2006), Costa Rica, Panama (2010), Cuba (2012), Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua (2013) and the Dominican Republic (2016) have joined as full members.

As a result of the entry of countries from Central America and the Caribbean, within the framework of the XXX Plenary Session the process of signing the Amendment of the Memorandum of Understanding was opened, with which the name was formally modified to GAFILAT, this in order to include the different geographical regions to which the members belonged, all Latin American countries.


CFATFThe Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) has 30 member states and  includes some Central and South American countries. It started in 1990. The Kingston Declaration on Money Laundering was issued in November 1992.


Other relevant organizations include the Financial Crimes Enforcement Agency (FINCen) of the U.S. Department of Treasury.

updated on 9/17/2018 5:02:54 PM