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The US government, acting through the US Department of the Treasury and the Office of Foreign Assets Control has issued a second set of sanctions against foreign cryptocurrency exchange, this time as part of a larger action against the biggest and longest established Dark Web Market, which is also subject to sanctions. That's all very interesting but buried in the story is something fascinating: a one-stop, global, hawala service.


India's Directorate of Revenue Intelligence has had a string of successes of identifying cash couriers and confiscating large sums at borders. The methods used by the carriers are instructive.

It's frustrating just how fundamentally stupid some people can be.

In the aftermath of 11 September, 2001, the blame machine was hunting for excuses and part of it rightly fixated on funds transfers and, rightly, fixated on the unlicensed transfer systems which were lumped together under the Farsi name "hawala." Then stupid, ignorant people started trying to sound clever and instead of standing up to them and correcting them, others started to adopt their nonsensical, made up terminology. Now they want to include it in law.

BIScom Subsection: 

Continuing our analysis of AFP v Ganesh Kalimuthu & Anor

For part one see here

The case is said to be on its own facts but the Court was not invited to consider all the relevant facts. It is therefore a narrow judgment. It is a precedent but it is not a comprehensive precedent and creates an open door for international transfers of large amounts of money with impunity.

A report in India Today says that "only 3 to 5 per cent of the [hawala] trade is functioning now."

Forgive us for being sceptical.

Also, we are quietly irritated by the Indian media's habit of equating hawala with money laundering and, in some cases, saying they are the same.