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Financial Crime News

The Australian Consumer and Competition Commission has been looking at how prices at petrol pumps move, with changes taking place in what, on the face of it, seems in concert. But, the ACCC says, there is in fact no evidence of collusion: it's simply price-watching and price-matching between operators. And if consumers take advantage of hints, there could be an enormous injection of discretionary spending from disposable income or a reduction in credit card debt across the country.

The news, then, is that what might have been suspected as a crime is not a crime at all.

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There is a fascinating case before the US Supreme Court relating to confiscation of assets used in furtherance of a crime as distinct from proceeds of criminal conduct. Oral argument took place last week and there is a transcript and recording here:

https://www.oyez.org/cases/2018/17-1091

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The fraud is old hat. The bitcoin address is, presumably, valid and enforcement agencies may wish to track and attack it. And, of course, any financial institution which has records of it should identify it as a suspicious account.

1HQ7wGdA5G9qUtM8jyDt5obDv1x3vEvjCy

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It's that time again: PayPal spam-scam time. But even by the standards of badly constructed spam-scams, this one is bad. So bad it's funny and so bad that anyone who falls victim to it may just be too stupid to live. But the bigger danger is that it's not a phishing scam but a way of placing malware on victims' computers and if that happens they are being human not stupid.

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It's a story that has grabbed the headlines - a week after it was first published. One suspects that there was much fact-checking going on before a New York Times article that says US President Trump "participated..in outright fraud," a statement of such extraordinary bluntness that the mere fact that it appears in print is at least as shocking as the allegation itself. There are so many things to consider but in FinancialCrimeRiskOfficers.com, we are interested in a relatively narrow aspect of the story...

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Identity fraud is usually a relatively unsophisticated operation. Usually, but not always. Kenneth Gibson of Reno, Nevada, USA, was not a usual suspect.


Image courtesy USA FBI Las Vegas field office.

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The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) has issued warnings relating to fake websites and/or phishing attacks on customers of three banks: China Citic, OCBC Wing Hang and Bank of China.

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"Attention: Nigel Morris-Cotterill

This is an exclusive notification from the District Court of Basel-Stadt (Strafgericht des Kantons Basel-Stadt).
We regret to inform you that your identity has been compromised in an identity theft scheme recently uncovered here in Switzerland."

I am soooooooooooo convinced.

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It's the fault of Hollywood and TV producers everywhere, with a bit of help from the tabloids and the over-excitement of both American politicians and law enforcement: as soon as someone mentions "cartel," thoughts jump to major drugs gangs. It's the same problem that led to a survey result in the UK where children thought the emergency telephone number is 911 (it's 999 and there are also European standard numbers that start with a 1 but no one can be bothered to remember them). In the vast majority of cases, the word "cartel" doesn't relate to drugs gangs at all. In relation to the way people conduct business by means of illegal collusion. That might not be as "sexy" as the idea of bankers being dragged to jail with their noses still covered in white powder but the ramifications of the...

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bolor@euroexchangesecurities.co.uk
*Swift Outward Transaction Report*

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Lessons in taking screenshots. After I wrote about Skype's pricing scheme, I logged onto Skype to see a message saying that my transaction remained outstanding. I clicked on it and was surprised: it had been adjusted to show that I should pay GBP10, not GBP12. OK, I thought, click to buy. How I wish I'd been realistic (some may say sceptical) and taken a screen shot. Previous story: Credit card companies should beware of payments to Skype.

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Ben Jayaweera, of Upper Mt Gravatt, has today appeared in the Brisbane Magistrates' Court charged with six counts of fraud involving approximately AUD5.9 million.

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This is a story about how eight men used Facebook to claim (and be paid) grants from the European Union for their cattle farms. The story fizzled out in 2013 and we want to know what happened. Does anyone know? (free content)

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FinCEN's biggest problem is that it is incredibly low profile and hardly anyone knows what it is or, even, in broad terms what it does. That's been its problem since its early days. For years it dined out on the single case that really hit the news: the Black Market Peso Exchange but that was old hat even in the late 1990s. Now it's got a new plan and it's aping, well, everyone else who wants to get their name in the papers. (free content)

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On 20th November 2012, HP issued a press release saying "“HP is extremely disappointed to find that some former members of Autonomy’s management team used accounting improprieties, misrepresentations and disclosure failures to inflate the underlying financial metrics of the company, prior to Autonomy’s acquisition by HP." That started a large pile of poo rolling downhill and, as we found out this week, Sushovan Hussain, Autonomy's Chief Financial Officer, was at the bottom of that hill.

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