How Billions in Dirty Cash Flowed Through Peru’s Biggest Banks

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Secret documents leaked to OjoPúblico reveal that more than $2.2 billion linked to suspected criminal activity entered Peru’s financial system through clients with alleged ties to drug trafficking, illegal gold mining, tax evasion and corruption.

OjoPúblico reached out to Banco de Crédito del Perú and BBVA Continental, the country’s two main banks, to learn more about why they accepted clients linked to organized crime. The banks declined to respond, citing financial secrecy laws.

The investigation reveals the banking system’s role in money laundering by organized crime groups and inaction by Peru’s only state oversight entity, the Superintendency of Banks, Insurance and Pension Funds (Superintendencia de Banca, Seguros y AFP – SBS), revealing multiple cases of noncompliance with regulations intended to combat such crimes.

OjoPúblico obtained access to secret documents from Peru’s Financial Intelligence Unit (Unidad de Inteligencia Financiera – UIF), a key player in the country’s fight against money laundering. The documents show that at least $2.2 billion from allegedly illegal activities entered the financial system since 1998.

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