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 Filing Results in Arrests on Drug Trafficking and Money Laundering | Depository Institutions, Involving SARs, Money Laundering, Narcotics Trafficking
SARs Assist in Conviction of Pharmacist | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud
314(a) Results Greatly Enhance Case Involving Material Support to Terrorism | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, Terrorism, Tax Crimes
Securities Dealer Provides Details of High Yield Investment Program Scheme | Broker Dealers, Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud
Suspicious Activity Reports Identify Money Laundering Activities | Informal Value Transfer Systems, Money Laundering, Involving SARs, BSA Violations
Escort Service Operates at and Launders Money through Casino | Money Laundering, Other Crimes, Casinos and Card Clubs
Business Used for Money Laundering and Pyramid Scheme | Broker Dealers, Money Laundering, Involving SARs
BSA Records Identify Accounts and Transactions Related to an Illegal Gambling Enterprise | Money Laundering, Other Crimes, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations
Local Municipality Case Example (Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering, and Mortgage Fraud) | Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering, Fraud, Involving CTRs, Depository Institutions
Illegal Casa De Cambio Launders More Than $5 Million | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Involving CTRs, Depository Institutions, Money Services Businesses
SAR Leads to Recovery of Funds Derived from Foreign Corruption | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, Schemes and Scams, Corruption
Suspicious Activity Reports Document Bank Transactions on Behalf of Drug Trafficker | Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Involving CTRs, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations
Operation Mule Train | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Involving CTRs, Depository Institutions, Money Services Businesses
Suspicious Activity Reports Identify Transactions Linked to Embezzlement of a Tribal Authority | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Other Crimes, Fraud, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations, Corruption, Tax Crimes
SAR Filing Leads to Identification of Elaborate Ponzi Schemes | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, Schemes and Scams, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations
FinCEN Data Proves to be Instrumental in Fraud Case | Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, ID Crimes, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations
SAR Filings Unveil Fraudulent Securities Dealer | Broker Dealers, Money Laundering, Involving SARs
BSA Records Help Dismantle Oxycodone Ring | Narcotics Trafficking, Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Involving CTRs, Depository Institutions, Money Services Businesses
SAR Leads to Conviction of Iraqi Money Launderer | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Other Crimes
Bank Secrecy Act Records, Tellers' Testimony Lead to Convictions for Medicare Fraud, Structuring, and Money Laundering | Money Laundering, Involving SARs, Fraud, Involving CTRs, Depository Institutions, BSA Violations