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In 2011, amid a crackdown on international money laundering, the U.S. Treasury Department tried to close a loophole that authorities said allows drug cartels to move bulk cash across borders on gift and other prepaid cards. The department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) proposed that money stored on these cards count toward a U.S. requirement to report cross-border movement of cash of $10,000 or more. But FinCEN later withdrew its proposed rule after pushback from the prepaid card industry, according to law enforcement sources.

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