The Value of FinCEN Data


Magnifying Glass in Front of Bookshelf

Financial data, collected from financial institutions by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network under the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), has proven to be of considerable value in money laundering, terrorist financing and other financial crimes investigations by law enforcement. When combined with other data collected by law enforcement and the intelligence communities, FinCEN data assists investigators in connecting the dots in their investigations by allowing for a more complete identification of the respective subjects with information such as personal information; previously unknown addresses; businesses and personal associations; banking patterns; travel patterns; and communication methods.

FinCEN’s Law Enforcement Awards

Every year, FinCEN holds its Law Enforcement Awards ceremony, which recognizes successfully prosecuted cases. The goals of the program are to recognize those law enforcement agencies that made effective use of financial institution reporting to obtain a successful prosecution and to demonstrate to the financial industry the value of its reporting to law enforcement. The program also emphasizes that prompt and accurate reporting by the financial industry is vital to the successful partnership with law enforcement to fight financial crime. FinCEN receives case submissions from law enforcement for the program, and in all cases, the use of BSA reporting by the financial industry provided highly noteworthy added value to significant investigations. Case summaries for many of the submissions are described in the press releases below:

Search Case Examples Prior to 2015 Using the Drop-Down Menu Below

SAR Reveals Bank Fraud and Money Laundering Violations by Rv Dealer | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, Depository Institutions
SAR Initiates Case that Leads to Guilty Pleas for Hiring Illegal Aliens | Involving SARs, Other Crimes, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations
SAR Review Team Identifies Gift Shop Operating as an Unregistered Money Services Business | Involving SARs, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations, Money Services Businesses
Local Municipality Case Example (Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering, and Mortgage Fraud) | Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering, Fraud, Involving CTRs, Depository Institutions
Business Owner Sentenced for Tax Evasion | Involving SARs, BSA Violations, Tax Crimes
Proactive SAR Query Leads to Structuring Conviction | Involving CTRs, BSA Violations
SAR Unveils Network of Brazilians Involved in a Stolen Check Scheme | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, ID Crimes, Check Crimes
Suspicious Activity Reports Document Transactions by Defendant With Ties to Organized Crime Group, Possible Terrorism Financing | Involving SARs, Fraud, ID Crimes, Depository Institutions, Terrorism, Check Crimes
SARs Identify Huge Check-Kiting Scheme by Auto Dealer | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, Schemes and Scams, Depository Institutions, Check Crimes
SARs Lead to Recovery of Funds Derived from Medical Fraud | Involving SARs, Fraud, Depository Institutions
Local Municipality Case Example (Drugs and Money Laundering) | Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering
Check Kite Nets Two | Involving SARs, Fraud, Check Crimes
SARs Assist in Money Laundering Investigation Involving the Insurance Industry | Narcotics Trafficking, Involving SARs, BSA Violations, Insurance Companies
Bank Secrecy Act Document Analysis Helpful in Fraud Case | Fraud, Depository Institutions, Casinos and Card Clubs, Insurance Companies
SARs Are Catalyst in Investigation of $13.1 Million Tax Fraud Conspiracy | Involving SARs, Fraud, ID Crimes, Depository Institutions, Tax Crimes
SAR Filing Leads to 125-Count Indictment in $2.7 Million Embezzlement Case | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations, Tax Crimes
SARs Identify Money Laundering of Proceeds from the Sale of Marijuana | Narcotics Trafficking, Involving SARs, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations
Three Family Members Plead Guilty to Structuring | Involving SARs, Fraud, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations, Tax Crimes
SAR Jump-Starts Investigation into Natural Resources Ponzi Scheme | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, Schemes and Scams, Depository Institutions, Check Crimes