It’s a scary time in America when you are considered a criminal for wanting to control your own money, but that is exactly what is happening. Banks are already required to file â€˜suspicious activity reportsâ€™ or SARs on their customers.Â If they donâ€™t file enough SARs, they can be fined or even imprisoned. BanksÂ submitted 1.6 MILLION SARs in 2013 alone. But now, the Justice Department wants banks to go even further.
A senior official from the Justice Department spoke to a group of bankers about the need for them to rat out their customers to the police.
Assistant attorney general Leslie Caldwell gave a speech in which he urged banks to â€œalert law enforcement authorities about the problemâ€ so that police can â€œseize the fundsâ€ or at least â€œinitiate an investigationâ€. According to the handbook for the Federal Financial Institution Examination Council, such suspicious activity includes, â€œTransactions conducted or attempted by, at, or through the bank (or an affiliate) and aggregating $5,000 or more.”
Simon Black of Sovereign man painted a scenario that is soon to be a reality.
Â Imagine going to the bank to withdraw some cash.
Having some cash on hand is always a prudent strategy, and especially today when more and more bank deposits are creeping into negative territory, meaning that you have to pay the banks for the privilege that they gamble with your money.
You tell the teller that youâ€™d like to withdraw $5,000 from your account. She hesitates nervously and wants to know why.
You try to politely let her know that thatâ€™s none of the bankâ€™s business as itâ€™s your money.
The teller disappears for a few minutes, leaving you waiting.
When she returns she tells you that you can collect your money in a few days as they donâ€™t have it on hand at the moment.
Slightly irritated because of the inconvenience, you head home.
But as you pull into your driveway later thereâ€™s an unexpected surprise waiting for you: two police officers would like to have a word with you about your intended withdrawal earlier.
So now, you have to explain why you wanted to withdrawal your own money.
In 2012 law enforcement agencies seized $4.2 billion in assets from Americans. In most cases the money, homes, cars or other assets were seized without probable cause, warrants, charge or trial. If they find you suspicious, your money is free game.
The Justice Department just made it a lot easier to engage in authorized â€œshake-downsâ€ of the American people.