Between the two, the Village of Bal Harbour and Glades County don't even have 16,000 residents. And yet, from 2009 to 2012, the Bal Harbour Police Department and the Glades County Sheriff's Office were behind an international, undercover money laundering sting operation that handled more than $55 million for drug cartels and other criminal organizations.
The state of Florida hadn't seen an operation of this magnitude in years.
A new investigation from our partners at the Miami Herald raises troubling questions about the so-called Tri-County Task Force. Did the unit help take dirty money off the streets and catch criminals or just enrich the departments and finance luxury living by police? Did the money laundering task force simply launder money for criminals it was supposed to catch?
WLRN spent some time following lead reporter Michael Sallah as he pieced together what went wrong with the Tri-County Task Force. That two-part series is included below, but you can listen to a full hour on South Florida money laundering Monday at 9 a.m. on the Sunshine Economy.
Read the Miami Herald's entire series here. And below, watch the Herald's mini-documentary explaining the findings of Sallah's investigation and the key players behind the Tri-County Task Force.