Art, Antiquities, and Money Laundering

36 Pages Posted: 25 Jan 2023

See all articles by Derek Fincham

Derek Fincham

South Texas College of Law Houston

Date Written: January 24, 2023


Criminals often seek to disguise their illegal acts by generating complex layers to disguise. And the trade in art and antiquities allows for that complexity as a standard part of the market. In fact, the art world is perhaps even more susceptible to money laundering than other markets, in that not only has regulation been limited, but also because of traditional art market practices. An explosion in the value of art combined with traditionally lax regulation and safeguards leaves the art market open to potential money laundering. But not for long. Money laundering in the art world seems more common today than ever before. Yet a persistent lack of data hampers effective regulation. Efforts in Europe, the United Kingdom, and the United States are likely bringing a new regulatory tool to bear by imposing record-keeping and reporting requirements on some select participants in the art and antiquities markets. This regulation imposes new costs on sectors of these markets, but considerable doubts remain about how well they will accomplish their stated policy objectives.

Keywords: criminal law, money laundering, AML, art, antiquities, art law, cultural heritage, cultural property

Suggested Citation

Fincham, Derek, Art, Antiquities, and Money Laundering (January 24, 2023). Kentucky Law Journal, Vol. 111, 2023, Available at SSRN:

Derek Fincham (Contact Author)

South Texas College of Law Houston ( email )

1303 San Jacinto Street
Houston, TX 77002
United States
9546678328 (Phone)

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