You’ve no doubt heard the stories about terrorists and the uber wealthy hiding money in Swiss bank accounts to evade taxes. Now, there is a new tool for money laundering which ensures clients the same level of secrecy. Brought to you once again by the good people of Switzerland, Freeports are giant warehouses in ports that are tax-free. Goods that are stored in Freeports are considered still in transit, and therefore, not subject to taxes or import duties. Freeports originally opened to temporarily store goods like grain. Eventually, big time collectors and probably some pretty bad people caught on and realized they could store high value artwork in Freeports without any sort of regulation. Besides the obvious consequences of Freeports becoming a vehicle for money laundering, think of what this means for the global art market. Theoretically, a collector of means can purchase art and store it, tax-free, in a Freeport, and leave it there for years while it increases in value. Or, consider this scenario: a broker sells an important work of art to an undisclosed buyer who stores it in a Freeport. Meanwhile there is no public record of the artwork’s whereabouts. The artwork becomes something of myth or legend, until one day, the seller brings it out of hiding and puts it up for sale. Will its value be inflated due its disappearance for so many years? Will the use of Freeports artifically tamper with the art market? Is anyone else depressed at the thought of billions of dollars worth of art crated in storage? Also, how much Nazi looted art is buried deep inside various Freeports?