The doors of Europe are open to criminals and the corrupt, thanks to lax, opaque, and mismanaged ‘Golden Visa’ schemes, according to a report released today by Transparency International and Global Witness. The two anti-corruption organisations say the financial benefit of citizenship- and residency-by-investment schemes is undercut by risks arising from insufficient due diligence, conflicts of interest, and wide discretionary powers.
“If you have a lot of money that you acquired through dubious means, securing a new place to call home far away from the place you stole from isn’t just appealing, it’s sensible. Golden Visa schemes offer a safe haven from authorities who might be looking to seize your stolen assets, and the freedom to travel without raising suspicion,” said Naomi Hirst, a Senior Campaigner at Global Witness.
“Given these inherent risks, these schemes must have the highest standards of