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World Money Laundering Report

The judgment in the AUSTRAC -v-Tabcorp civil case is a landmark: it's the first civil case that AUSTRAC has brought to a conclusion in court. But the judgment is only the latest step in a long running investigation and series of regulatory actions against the ASX-listed gambling giant.

A man who, through a corporate entity, operated off-street parking schemes on premises owned by a fund to raise money for former servicemen has been arrested after an investigation discovered that he, allegedly, failed to account to the fund for as much as USD11 million over a period of years.

The final (of three) part of World Money Laundering Report's analysis of the Manafort and Gates case and its implications for the financial services and other regulated industries.

Here, in this three part article, World Money Laundering Report examines the charges, the background and the impact on financial services and other regulated businesses.

Continuing our analysis of how Australia's Proceeds of Crime Act provides a mechanism for successful money laundering.

See Part I here

Late-stage money laundering is after the proceeds of criminal conduct have already been through a series of transactions to hide, move and even invest them. As the proceeds move further away from the original source, their origin is obscured but they are still not safe. Late-stage laundering usually involves using financial institutions or jurisdictions that are known to have good systems in place and therefore the next move is with the benefit of their reputation. Australia, on the other hand, provides - enshrined in its law - a safe haven that provides positive encouragement to launderers to place late-stage laundering there.

Part II here

It all began when the Philippines was found to have been the destination for the money stolen from the Central Bank of Bangladesh and, all over the world, fingers began to be pointed at the country's Swiss-cheese like counter-money laundering regime. What was especially bemusing to outsiders was that while the country was on one level constantly engaged in a battle with terrorists in the south, the laws to combat the funding of terrorism were in a similarly poor condition. Stung by criticism, the Philippines began to review its laws. One major area that had been entirely left out of account was casinos. In the past few months, that has dramatically changed.

Why, some might ask, is World Money Laundering Report drawing attention to violent crime statistics? "The figures released by the US government this week demonstrate that people engage in crime amongst those they have a major factor in common with, the "people like us" syndrome I discuss in "Understanding Suspicion in Financial Crime. Crime committed within defined groups, be they racial, social, religious or other groups, are at the heart of how and why so many offences are committed," Nigel Morris-Cotterill writes.

Financial Crime Risk Management and, in particular, issues relating to money laundering, have left a number of people dead and far more threatened with harm to themselves or their families. Similarly, reporting on issues that embarrass governments or criminal gangs has led to murders. Put them together and you get Daphne Caruana Galizia, a blogger in Malta who has been at the forefront of working through the Panama Papers, revealing information on the activities of the clients of Mossack Fonseca and their network, which had long had a presence in Malta. Yesterday, someone blew up her car with her in it, reminding MLROs, etc. everywhere of why confidentiality is a matter of their personal safety.

This article was first published by Nigel Morris-Cotterill in June 2003
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The financial services industry is getting only part of the risk management and anti-money laundering point. And modern business models in banking and insurance militate against effective know-your- customer procedures says Nigel Morris-Cotterill of The Anti Money Laundering Network.

A Bill passed by the House of Representatives, part of the US Congress, in September has far reaching implications for the Inland Revenue Service (IRS) specifically to prevent, in some circumstances, seizure and forfeiture of moneys relating to Bank Secrecy Act offences.

A jeweller and his wife have been charged with conspiracy to engage in illegal financing and debt collection practices in which it is alleged that they targeted US Marines at various bases in California.

As China continues is increasingly effective "Operation Fox Hunt" against corrupt officials who have left China with their spoils, or sent their money abroad in the hope of hiding it, there is growing co-operation between Chinese authorities and those in the countries where people and/or assets are located. Australia is one country that has been helping. But a thorny old question remains.

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