The Treasury Department is cracking down on money laundering. The agency is investigating New York luxury real estate purchases made in cash through shell companies. The effort is not a new one. However, according to a recent report by The New York Times, the examination was recently expanded.
What exactly is happening? These examinations are called geographic targeting orders. They are completed by title insurance companies. The process was initiated after a separate publication by The New York Times found that many of the high-end real estate buyers in the luxury market were the focus of government investigations for criminal activity around the world.
Why should New Yorkers take note? The report notes that the examination is focusing on a handful of select areas throughout the country. The five boroughs in New York top this list.
The agencies are looking specifically at properties that were purchased at or above the $3 million mark in Manhattan or properties that were at or above $1.5 million in the other boroughs.
What should I do if I am flagged for money laundering? If you or your business is under investigation on charges of money laundering it is important to take the charges seriously.
These charges are often pursued in combination with other criminal charges. In these situations, it is wise to seek legal counsel to better ensure your rights are protected.