You may have recently read in the press or watched a report on the news about â€œOperation Choke Point.â€ This is a wide-ranging investigation into banks and payment processors by the Department of Justice. The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) reports that â€œthe true goal of the operation is to â€˜choke outâ€™ certain industries, including legal businesses like sellers of firearms and ammunition, which the current administration considers politically objectionable.â€
There are presently 30 merchant categories, including coin dealers that have been associated with â€œhigh-riskâ€ activity by the Department of Justice. (Please note that this is under the judicial branch of government, not the legislative branch.)
Since January, ICTA Legislative Consultant Jimmy Hayes has attended hearings on Operation Choke Point, including last monthâ€™s U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Based on these hearings, Hayes does not believe that coin dealers will be a target of this overreaching initiative by the Department of Justice.
As of today, no ICTA member or non-member has contacted us about being targeted or receiving an account termination letter from their bank.
There is absolutely no connection between Operation Choke Point and cash reporting or the anti-money laundering laws. If you receive a letter from your bank, please contact ICTA immediately.
We will keep you updated on any new developments.