MEXIO CITY -- Attorney General Kamala D. Harris and four other state attorneys general today signed a letter of intent with the National Banking and Securities Commission of Mexico to establish a bi-national working group on money laundering enforcement. The delegation of U.S. state attorneys general is in Mexico to strengthen working relationships with governments of both countries and enhance efforts to combat transnational crime.
"The laundering of money fuels transnational criminal organizations and threatens California's economy and our public safety," Attorney General Harris said. "This bi-national agreement will create the cooperation and communication needed to disrupt the financing of transnational crime. I want to thank my colleagues and the Mexican government for their steadfast commitment to addressing this serious issue."
Last week, Attorney General Harris issued a report, Gangs Beyond Borders: California and the Fight Against Transnational Organized Crime, that identified California as a key portal for the transfer of illicit money. According to the report, transnational criminal organizations transfer billions of dollars out of the U.S. through California. As much as $40 billion in illicit funds were laundered in the state in 2012.
The bi-national agreement will develop an anti-money laundering working group with the following purposes:
The delegation of U.S. state attorneys general, including California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris, Colorado Attorney General John Suthers, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, and New Mexico Attorney General Gary King signed the letter of intent with Jaime Gonzalez Aguadé, President of the National Banking and Securities Commission of Mexico.
On Monday, the U.S. delegation of state attorneys general met with Mexican state attorneys general to discuss various issues related to transnational crime, including high-tech crime, human trafficking, and the use and adoption of technology. The delegation met with Mexican state attorneys general from Baja California, Chihuahua, Campeche, Distrito Federal, Jalisco, Sonora, and Zacatecas.
On Monday, the delegation also met with Mexican Attorney General Jesus Murillo Karam to strengthen cooperation in the fight against transnational crime in the areas of drug, human, and weapons trafficking, money laundering, cybercrime and use of technology in law enforcement.
Attorney General Harris’ report last week was the first comprehensive report analyzing the current state of transnational criminal organizations in California and the threats they pose to the state’s public safety and economy, including the problem of money laundering. The report is available here: https://oag.ca.gov/transnational-organized-crime