Nikos Passas

Professor at Northeastern University

Nikos Passas is professor of criminology and criminal justice at Northeastern University, and co-director of the Institute for Security and Public Policy. He is also visiting professor at the Basel Institute on Governance; visiting professor at Vienna University of Applied Sciences for Management & Communication’s Center for Corporate Governance & Business Ethics; distinguished visiting professor at Beijing Normal University; professor, distinguished practitioner in financial integrity and senior fellow of the Financial Integrity Institute at Case Western Reserve Law School; head of UN Sanctions Implementation Legal Review Services at Compliance Capacity and Skills International (CCSI) and chair of the Academic Council of the Anti-Corruption Academy in India. He received a 2017 Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award from Tufts University’s Institute on Global Leadership.

His law degree is from the Univ. of Athens (LL.B.), his master’s from the University of Paris-Paris II (D.E.A.) and his Ph.D. from the University of Edinburgh Faculty of Law. He is a member of the Athens Bar (Greece). He is fluent in 6 languages and plays classical guitar.

He specializes in the study of corruption, illicit financial/trade flows, sanctions, informal fund transfers, remittances, terrorism, white-collar crime, financial regulation, organized crime and international crimes. He has published more than 220 articles, book chapters, reports and books in 14 languages. His next book is entitled Trade-Based Financial Crime and Illicit Flows.

He is a co-author of United Nations Non-Proliferation Sanctions on Iran and North Korea (2016), the author of Informal Value Transfer Systems (IVTS) and Criminal Activities (2004), Legislative Guide for the Implementation of the UN Convention against CorruptionLegislative Guide for the Implementation of the UN Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime (2003), IVTS and Criminal Organizations (1999) and editor of Transnational Financial Crimes (2013), The United Nations Convention against Corruption as a Way of Life (2007), International Crimes (2003), It’s Legal but It Ain’t Right: Harmful Social Consequences of Legal Industries (2004); Upperworld and Underworld in Cross-Border Crime (2002); Transnational Crime (1999), The Future of Anomie Theory (1997), and Organized Crime (1995). In addition, he has contributed to the United Nations Non-Proliferation Sanctions on Iran and North Korea: Practitioner’s Compliance Handbook (2015), edited a volume on the regulation of informal remittance systems for the IMF, co-authored a World Bank study into Migrant Labor Remittances in the South Asia Region, authored two reports to FinCEN on the trade in precious stones and metals and completed numerous studies on terrorism finance, procurement fraud, corruption asset recovery, anti-corruption authorities, as well as on governance, development and corruption international policy.

He serves as editor-in-chief of the international journal Crime, Law and Social Change and associate editor in a number of journals. He served as chair of the Am. Soc. of Criminology International Division and as ASC’s liaison to the United Nations. He also served on the Board of Directors of the International Society of Criminology.

Passas offers training to law enforcement, intelligence and private sector officials on regulatory and financial crime subjects. He regularly serves as expert witness in court cases or public hearings and consults with law firms, financial institutions, private security and consulting companies and various organizations, including the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), OECD, OSCE, the IMF, the World Bank, other multilateral and bilateral institutions, the United Nations (ODC, Development Programme, Security Council, etc.), the Caribbean FATF, the European Union, the US National Academy of Sciences, research institutions and government agencies in all continents. His work with UNODC includes the design and initiation of the legal library of UNCAC-related national texts and the design and content of the UNCAC review mechanism software and checklist.

He served as team leader for a European Union Commission project on the control of proliferation/WMD finance. His current projects focus on anti-corruption authorities, the development of performance indicators for the assessment of anti-corruption, integrity and accountability in several countries, corruption and procurement regulation, trade-facilitated financial crime, the regulation of remittance flows in cash-based societies, and on use of IT for the enhancement of due diligence conducted by financial institutions. He organized the launching and coordinated a global inter-disciplinary academic initiative on anti-corruption courses and materials, supported by Northeastern University, UNODC, OECD, and the International Bar Association to reach out to universities and educational institutions around the world. He has been an INSPIRE Fellow at Tufts University’s Institute of Global Leadership, consortium member and Distinguished Inaugural Professor of Collective Action, Business Ethics and Compliance at the International Anti-Corruption Academy, distinguished visiting fellow at the TC Beirne School of Law, University of Queensland, and corruption program director at the Ethics and Compliance Officer Association (ECOA).

2:00 - 2:35 PM

Friday March 6th, 2020

Crypto and Halawa Networks: Key Concerns and Policy Considerations

At first glance, cryptocurrencies and hawala networks seem worlds apart – One a hot new “trustless” technology, the other an ancient system with trust at its very core. Yet the two systems for moving value intersect in a number of ways, with funds, users and brokers increasingly moving between crypto and hawala networks. Likewise, some of the lessons learned from regulatory frameworks and policy around hawalas may have applications to the increasingly regulated crypto space. In this session, a financial crime expert with deep experience studying and investigating hawalas brings his insights, and answers your questions!