Financial investigator Jim Mintz has been following dirty money for decades. Here’s what he noticed in the indictment against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.
00:00 I’ve been tracing dirty money for more than 30 years. Studying kleptocrats all over the world, distinct patterns emerge.
00:11 The thing about kleptocrats is that the moves and tricks they like to use each contain the seeds of their own destruction.
00:20 They can get caught at every stage, and those patterns are the basis of our new game Kleptocrat How to hide dirty money.
00:27 In virtually every case, corrupt people took six separate steps to conceal their assets
00:33 Take the money under the table.
00:36 Create a financial structure to hide it.
00:38 Move the money into the structure.
00:40 Network with family members to run the operation
00:44 Cover up their tracks
00:47 And last, since it’s no fun for the money to sit gathering dust, take the money out and enjoy it.
00:51 I know nothing about Paul Manafort or the allegations in the indictment against him. I read the Manafort indictment and lo and behold, the allegations match the six-step pattern.
01:02 It says Manafort allegedly took eighteen million dollars secretly from Ukraine that’s step one
01:08 Step two, Manafort allegedly created a blizzard of offshore companies with names like blue Atilla. They’re on tiny islands I bet most people couldn’t even find on a map.
01:18 Then step three, he allegedly started moving the money around six separate companies on the
island of Cyprus and sent more than five million dollars to a home-improvement firm in the Hamptons.
01:33 Step 4, Manafort allegedly enlisted some of his relatives to help. The indictment says he got his
daughter and son-in-law to pretend to live in the real estate he was buying.
01:42 Step 5 is covering up your secret money. Manafort allegedly lied to his accountants and to the federal agents about the funds. He used multiple passports and he quote developed a false and misleading cover story.
01:57 Lastly, Manafort allegedly brought the money out to play. The indictment says he quote used his hidden overseas wealth to enjoy a lavish lifestyle in the United States.
02:09 I guess sometimes a game can help you understand the news.
Learn more about the game and how corrupt politicians launder money here and download the Kleptocrat app here.Check out more coverage of Kleptocrat:
New Yorker magazine profile of Jim Mintz and Irwin Chen
Wall Street Journal: Fancy Yourself a Kleptocrat? Here’s a Chance to Try It
Buzzfeed: How To Launder Billions In 5 Easy Steps
Compliance Week: Shall We Play a Game?
British American Business: Global Investigation Firm Launches New Education App