I've met two crazy Frenchmen in my life. The first was a guy whose name escapes me, but we raced on bicycles down the switchbacks of the Pyrenees in Andorra and just when I thought I was winning, this Frenchman put his hands behind his back into an aerodynamic tuck that would make any daredevil nervous.
From money laundering to terrorist financing to tax evasion, opaque businesses and corporate vehicles have become a useful tool for international criminals. For governments and regulators attempting to battle these financial crimes, it has become vitally important to establish the true identity of a business's ultimate owner or beneficiary.
There was a local Special Olympics swim meet happening in my city, and I was asked if I would come and give out medals. I didn't know very much about Special Olympics except that it provided sport programs to people with intellectual disabilities. I reluctantly accepted the invitation. I could have never imagined how this single act would change my life forever.
Why are police in Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Colombia not arresting child sex traffickers if they are so easy to find? The simplest explanation is law enforcement complicity in such crimes. Agreeing to cooperate with OUR is a win-win: local cops get to keep an eye on what's happening and ensure OUR doesn't stray into their turf; they also gain international kudos for taking on the traffickers.
Unwittingly, I became a member of a club no one wants to belong to early on a chilly Friday morning, December 14, 2012. I had never even heard of this club. There is no formal name for this group and we don't have a clubhouse. The members are from across the country, all races, ages and genders. We live in urban areas, the suburbs and rural communities. Yet we all met the memberships' one criterion, a life taken by gun violence. The price of admission to this club is bullets.