The other evening I was watching “Death in Paradise” (so shoot me: I have a weakness for police detectives, which overcomes all qualms about the programme itself being complete tosh with plots so thin that even my cat could solve them) and the baddie on this occasion was a money launderer. (Boo hiss, etc.) Of course my ears pricked up and I was on alert for any training material – perhaps a cogent explanation of the problem, or an in-depth analysis of the laundering routes from the Caribbean to Europe via the US. But no: he was described as a money launderer, the woman he had been wooing slapped his face, and off he went to prison.
Does this mean that “money laundering” is now part of the national vocabulary and so needs no further explanation? Is the introductory “What is money laundering?” slide that I use in most of my presentations now entirely redundant, with the audience sitting there thinking, “Well, duh – we all know what money laundering is. Tell us more about that chap who died of the Viagra overdose.” (Sani Abacha, in case you’re wondering – famous for going out with a bang and not a whimper.) Personally, I would be delighted if that is the case. The more people that know what money laundering is, the better: sunlight is indeed the best disinfectant.