In 1996, the IMF came up with the vague estimation that 2-5 % of the global economy involved laundered money. But, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an inter-governmental body set up to combat money laundering, said: “Overall, it is absolutely impossible to produce a reliable estimate of the amount of money laundered.”
The estimate most often bandied around in the media is $1.5 trillion a year, but Dr Dionysios Demetis, the author of the book Technology and Anti-Money Laundering, disputes the figure.
“The broader system of money laundering operations exhibits such a degree of complexity that it is impossible to determine the amount being laundered. The most commonly cited figure of $1.5 trillion is for media consumption alone,” he said.
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