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#20900 - 06/17/02 02:31 PM SAR or not

We received a call from US Customs regarding a wire that ended up in the Philipines. They said the recipient was defrauding US citizens and wanted info on the wire. The money was supposed to be for humanitarian purposes. We said we would need a subpeona, but at their request called the sender and gave their phone number to him. The officer who took the call, phoned the sender and relayed the message. He said that he was sure it was legitimate and wasn't willing to authorize us to release info to US Customs. The officer felt he may be in on the scam from her conversation. However, our BSA officer has sent several wires for this person and doesn't think he's in on it, he's very religous and probably thinks everything is fine. This same person has sent several wires for investments to other recipients in the past suggesting that this was a sure way to make quick money. Should we file a SAR or wait to see if we hear anything further from US Customs?

Also, does everyone file SARs on every suspected kite over $5000, whether it can be proved or not? ex: deposits are being made through an ATM so we're unable to see those checks. Large checks are being written off our bank in about the same amounts and being run through two other banks. We've captured the ATM card and will close the account when we are sure we have collected funds.

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Operations Compliance
#20901 - 06/17/02 02:59 PM Re: SAR or not
David Dickinson Offline
10K Club
David Dickinson
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 18,762
Central City, NE
I'll address your 2nd question: "does everyone file SARs on every suspected kite over $5000, whether it can be proved or not?

You are mandated to file a SAR for any suspicious activity (depending on certain dollar limits). If you have a suspect kiting that adds up to $5000 or more, you should file a SAR. Whether you can prove it or not doesn't matter. It is not a Known Activity Report, it is a Suspicious Activity Report. If you feel that it is kiting so well that you are capturing the ATM card and closing the account, what is stopping you from filing a SAR?
David Dickinson

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