Transparency International revealed that Dubai has become a global sanctuary for money laundering, where “corrupt and other criminals” can buy luxury properties without any restrictions.
In its annual report on the world’s corruption index, the organization drew conclusions from the Anti-Corruption and Crime Investigations Network and the Center for Advanced Defense Studies in Washington on money laundering in Dubai.
Transparency said it is possible to buy a property in Dubai worth millions of pounds, in exchange for bags of cash and a few questions from the concerned authorities.
Dubai is on the international stage in the field of money laundering and the existence of suspicious practices in the real estate sector, according to Transparency and other bodies.
A report by the Center for Advanced Defense Studies (June 2011) found that there were 44 properties worth approximately $28.2 million directly associated with sanctioned individuals, as well as 37 properties worth approximately $78.8 million within their expanded networks.
The report concluded that the UAE, and in particular the Emirate of Dubai, has become a safe haven for the laundering of funds from a number of war criminals, financiers, and drug traffickers, based on leaks of a database of information on property and residence documents for these persons.
In October 2018, the French Magazine Le Nouvel Observateur revealed that many investigations were aimed at the work of the International Network of Tax Evasion and Money Laundering, led by the Hellan Group, based in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE.
The Magazine noted that since it revealed that investigative report entitles “Dubai Papers” on tax evasion and money laundering from the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, investigations in Switzerland, Dubai, and Mauritius have accelerated.
These investigations have allowed us to understand the extent of the activities of the Helan Group, a wide network of tax evasion and money laundering, the magazine said.
The British Guardian newspaper reported in June 2018 that Dubai had crossed the Spanish island of Costa del Carmen, known as the world’s worst money-laundering spot.
The newspaper pointed out that British investigators are studying leaked information for real estate in Dubai shows that Britons used Dubai to hide 16.5 billion pounds taxes for the United Kingdom, between 2005 and 2016.
Rood Stone, assistant director of the National Revenue and Customs Coordination Unit for Organized Crime, said the fraudsters deposited goods in Dubai in 2005 to cripple the tax authorities’ ability to know their movements.