The Green Dream

The Lucky Laundry: How the Aussie economy got hooked on the world's dirtiest cash

January 19, 2023
The Green Dream
The Lucky Laundry: How the Aussie economy got hooked on the world's dirtiest cash
Show Notes

In today's ruthless world of organised crime, the best criminals aren't foolish enough to steal money out of banks. They wear tailored suits, carry briefcases, and discreetly slip money into banks. 

In ethical investment we often talk about ‘ESG’, ie the Environmental, Social and Governance impacts created by an investment. Environmental and Social impacts are pretty easy to understand and quantify, but the ‘G’ often takes a back seat. How do we assess whether a company is run ethically, and ensure that it acts in the best interest of its stakeholders?

Nathan Lynch’s book, The Lucky Laundry, highlights how unethical practices can have a devastating impact on a company and its shareholders – and where some of Australia’s biggest banks went wrong.

In this discussion with Nathan, we delve deep inside this hidden world to explain how dark money has infected the lives of ordinary people - and tainted Australian democracy. He opens the curtain on the hidden world of financial intelligence, where crooks and spooks play a cat-and-mouse game inside the world's black money markets. Since being published in late 2022, The Lucky Laundry has already been longlisted for a 2022 Walkley Award and earned the Nathan the 2022 Financial Crime Fighter Award.

To borrow from the blurb - Australia is awash with dirty money. It flows through our economy, keeps banks running, powers big business, puts coffee on restaurant tables, seeps into clubs, pubs, sport, the art world and anywhere that value is moved. It infiltrates real estate, costs billions in policing, and takes a terrible toll on Australian lives. What law enforcement agencies might lack in legislation and political will, they make up for with sheer resourcefulness. When they can't get at the masterminds and bigwigs, they have honed tactics that intercept the flow of illicit cash and aim to drive a wedge between crooks and their ill-gotten wealth.

Nathan Lynch is a writer and international speaker who has spent two decades investigating the hidden world of dark money that fuels organised crime, corruption and violent extremism around the globe. His work peels back the layers of complex financial crime schemes. He is certified by the US Department of Justice's elite CCIPS Cybercrime Laboratory and is a program expert with the Financial Services Volunteer Corps, which provides support to developing countries to help them combat the scourges of money laundering and other serious financial crimes. Nathan has trained police, government officials and bankers across Asia and the Middle East on the techniques the world's criminals use to conceal and clean their dirty money.

I hope you enjoy this conversation with Nathan Lynch.

You can purchase Nathan’s book at Amazon – Lucky Laundry. For more information about James Baird and JustInvest Financial Planning see: justinvest and ethicalinvestment.  

We wish to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land we recorded on, the Wardandi Noongar people. We pay our respects to them and their culture; and to elders past, present and emerging.