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Countering Terrorist Financing

The practitioner’s point of view

Edited By Mark Pieth, Daniel Thelesklaf and Radha Ivory

Terrorists need money to commit acts of violence and sustain their operations. Measures to combat terrorism therefore aim to prevent terrorists from raising, moving and using funds or other assets. The effectiveness – and the fairness – of these measures were considered at the second ‘Giessbach’ seminar on counter-terrorist financing (CTF) organised by the Basel Institute on Governance in October 2008.
This book contains essays presented at the seminar written by practitioners and academics with extensive experience in the field of CTF. The authors offer a diversity of views on the domestic, regional and international initiatives aimed at detecting terrorist funds in the financial system, preventing terrorists from moving their money via alternative financial channels and facilitating the recovery of terrorist assets. The editors conclude with in-sights into the ongoing challenge of making CTF measures both effective and legally sustainable in the lead-up to Giessbach III in December 2009.

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YARA ESQUIVEL SOTO - An autonomous offence for the financing of terrorism: notes from an Ibero-American perspective 195

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YARA ESQUIVEL SOTO An autonomous offence for the financing of terrorism: notes from an Ibero-American perspective I. Introduction: reinventing the wheel? On 29 June 2000, twenty-year-old Marwan al-Shehhi received USD 5,000 at a Western Union facility in New York. The remittance was sent from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Exchange Centre in Dubai by a man who identified himself as Isam Mansar. Less than a month later, al-Shehhi received a second remittance from Mansar: on 18 July 2000, Mansar sent USD 10,000 via another bank transfer from the same exchange centre in Dubai to al-Shehhi’s account in Suntrust Bank, Florida; the joint account holder was Mohammed Atta. On 5 August 2000, Mansar made yet a third remittance of USD 9,500, again from the same exchange centre to the same account at the Suntrust Bank. Three weeks later, on 29 August 2000, a man by the name of Ali Abdul Aziz Ali transferred by wire USD 20,000 to the account owned jointly by al-Shehhi and Atta, using a phone number which differed from the number provided by Mansar in previous transactions Yara Esquivel Soto worked as an Anti Corruption Public Prosecutor in Costa Rica, where she was in charge of the investigation and trial of several high pro- file corruption cases. Later she took a position as a regional investigator in the Office of Internal Oversight Services of the United Nations in Kenya, where she investigated fraud, corruption and malfeasance within the organisation. Cur- rently, she works...

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