July 14, 2016
In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court vacated former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell’s eleven corruption convictions. The jury that convicted McDonnell was given erroneous instructions, according to the Court. At issue was the question of what constitutes an “official act.” Read more
Co-Written by: Shruti Shah, Vice President, Programs and Operations, TI-USA
July 5, 2016
It is difficult enough for law enforcement agencies to successfully bring international graft cases and seize stolen assets. But it is proving just as difficult to return the money to the citizens without it landing back in the hands of the thieves. “When you think about the money that’s stolen it’s like an inverted pyramid,” says Shruti Shah, vice-president of programmes and operations at Transparency International USA. “The top is the money that’s stolen. A smaller percentage is frozen and a minuscule percentage is actually returned. Read more
June 17, 2016
The Supreme Court of the United States is currently finalizing its review of former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell’s 2015 conviction, with the Court’s opinion expected at the end of June. Read more
Contributors: Claudia Dumas, Jacqueline deGramont
May 23, 2016
Money has a tendency to move, and Switzerland is hardly the only tax haven. If it becomes impractical to hide fortunes there, the money could migrate to Singapore, or, for that matter, to America. Shruti Shah, the vice-president of Transparency International U.S.A., recently found that in such states as Delaware and Nevada it is easier to establish an anonymous shell company than it is to obtain a library card. Read more
May 9, 2016
The massive leak dubbed the Panama Papers has given the UK Anti-Corruption Summit on May 12 an unexpected boost. Those coming to the summit, now including the U.S., are lining up to make announcements about the steps they are taking to tackle corruption and specifically financial secrecy. Read more
May 6, 2016
TI-USA’s Shruti Shah says when shell companies open accounts here, bankers need to understand who really owns, controls and profits from the money. “One of the problems that was highlighted in the Panama Papers was that often officials named in executive positions or in managerial positions for anonymous companies are figureheads. They don’t actually control the entity.” Read More.
April 14, 2016
TI-USA Shruti Shah states, regarding UK, Germany, France, Italy, and Spain automatically sharing tax information, that “It is a great first step but a lot more work needs to be done; there is one player missing from the list that is the US; and this also shows that the UK needs to do more work in its own backyard and tackle overseas territories. Information on who truly owns these companies in these overseas territories also needs to be available.” Read More.
April 7, 2016
“As of now, U.S. financial institutions, while they’re required to do customer due diligence, they’re not really required to determine and verify the true beneficial owner of their corporate clients,” said Shruti Shah, vice president of the nonprofit Transparency International – USA. “That’s a loophole.” Read More.
April 7, 2016
A large data leak called the Panama Papers recently accused a number of world leaders of hiding money in offshore bank accounts to avoid taxes. Shruti Shah explains what we know so far about the documents, and the fallout that could come from the scandal. Read More.