Michael McDonald, in memoriam

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Michael was a 27-year veteran of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division. He retired in 1998 and formed a Miami based consulting firm specializing in international money laundering, Bank Secrecy Act, Patriot Act, asset forfeiture, compliance and related matters. The firm has been a network of retired Special Agents, each with in-depth experience in money laundering investigations.

Michael, 68, born February 12, 1948 in Gary, Indiana and moved to Miami in 1966 to earn a Business Administration degree from the University of Miami in 1970. Mike passed away Thursday, Oct. 20 in Wellington, FL. Mike was married to, Melanie, the love of his life, for 45 years. Loving father and father-in-law of Carrie McDonald and Ryan (Kara) McDonald, and grandfather to Michael. Brother to Larry (Candy) McDonald. Proud Uncle and a great friend to many. All his friends in the Money Transfer & Payments Industry and the Compliance Community will miss certainly him as a friend, colleague, advisor, consultant and a true gentleman. Our thoughts go to his wife Melanie and his family. You can go to his Memory Guest Book and leave a note for his friends and family.

Michael McDonald was a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist (CAMS) and a former member of the Advisory Board of the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists (ACAMS). Michael was also the former MSB Task Force Chairperson for ACAMS. He was a founding Advisory Board member to the Association of Money Services Compliance Officers and the Association of Certified Financial Crime Specialists.

During his tenure with the IRS Criminal Investigation Division, Mike held several field agent and managerial positions and directed investigative resources in many high profile money laundering task forces. He was the lead manager in the development of the first money laundering task force, Operation Greenback, during South Florida’s drug wars of the 1970s and ’80s, where he helped bust members of Colombia’s infamous Medellin Cartel. Read this article from the Miami Herald published by Howard Cohen on October 25.

He was the first IRS Coordinator to the Florida/Caribbean Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) and the South Florida High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force (HIDTA). He became widely known as one of the government’s premier experts on money laundering, asset forfeiture and the Bank Secrecy Act.

Since his retirement, Mike lectured at seminars and consulted banks, non-bank financial institutions, multi-national corporations, foreign and U.S. government agencies on money laundering and compliance matters throughout the U.S., the Caribbean, Mexico, Europe, Middle East and Asia/Pacific Rim. He participated in several International Money Transfer Conferences as a Speaker and Panelist, always bringing insights and opinions that IMTC participants appreciated. He was retained for litigation support and as an expert witness in civil and criminal cases on money laundering and Bank Secrecy Act matters. He conducted training programs reaching over 25,000 financial professionals, law enforcement and government officials. He conducted training seminars to law enforcement task forces throughout the United States on money laundering investigations and the perfection of both criminal prosecutions and asset forfeiture cases. Michael worked with various countries in drafting proceeds of crime legislation. He also participated as a Money Laundering Expert to the United Nations in Asia.