KYC360 Weekly Roundup

Published on Jan 26, 2024

Top stories this week: 

$3bn money laundering case in Singapore | New sanctions imposed on individuals linked to Hamas | Canada’s Financial Intelligence Agency expresses concerns about online gambling 

Welcome to this week’s edition of the KYC Roundup. In the AML arena articles cover the misuse of Discretionary Trusts for illegal money laundering, a man in East London has been convicted of accepting payments for facilitating illegal small boat crossings and in Singapore, two individuals are being pursued by authorities for a $3bn money laundering case. There are warnings about the criminal exploitation of art storage facilities and a fascinating report by RUSI on money laundering through football clubs.

In the fast-paced world of sanctions there are new sanctions imposed by the EU, UK and US on individuals linked to Hamas. The UK imposes sanctions on a shipping firm in the UAE and three people have been arrested in the Netherlands violating Russian sanctions.  

We round off this week’s roundup in the world of gaming where Canada’s Financial Intelligence Agency has expressed concerns about online gambling sites being exploited by money launderers.

 

Financial_ServicesKYC & AML

Individual Convicted of Money Laundering in East London Linked to Illegal Small Boat Crossings

A man in East London was found guilty of accepting payments for facilitating illegal small boat crossings. This conviction serves as a warning to others involved in similar activities and highlights the agency's commitment to tackling money laundering and illegal immigration.

Addressing the Misuse of Discretionary Trusts for Illegal Money Laundering

Discretionary trusts are legal arrangements that allow trustees to manage assets on behalf of beneficiaries. However, there is concern that these trusts can be exploited by criminals to hide and launder illicit funds. 

Singapore Authorities Pursue Two Individuals in $3 Billion Money Laundering Case Linked to 1MDB Scandal

The case involves Malaysian state fund 1MDB and is considered one of the largest financial scandals in history. The individuals being sought are Low Taek Jho, a Malaysian businessman, and Tan Kim Loong, a Malaysian financier. Both are believed to have played significant roles in the illicit movement of funds. 

Canada's Banking Regulator to Intensify Efforts Against Money Laundering in Financial Sector

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) aims to enhance its supervisory practices and frameworks to address the growing concerns regarding money laundering and terrorist financing. The regulator intends to implement a new anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing strategy by 2024, which will include updated guidance and requirements for financial institutions.

Stricter Regulations and Cooperation is Needed to Combat Money Laundering in the Real Estate Market 

The European Commission has identified real estate as a high-risk sector for money laundering due to its attractiveness for illicit activities. A recent case involving a Maltese businessman who was found guilty of money laundering through property transactions, emphasizes the need for stricter regulations and enforcement to combat this issue effectively. 

Identifying and Mitigating Money Laundering Risks with High-Risk Third Countries

HM Treasury has issued a money laundering advisory notice regarding high-risk third countries. The notice aims to inform individuals and businesses about the risks associated with conducting financial transactions with these countries. It provides guidance on how to identify and mitigate these risks, including enhanced due diligence measures and reporting suspicious activities. 

Bipartisan Efforts to Combat Money Laundering: Senator Chuck Grassley Leads Crackdown

Senator Chuck Grassley has introduced legislation to strengthen anti-money laundering laws and enhance transparency in financial transactions. The proposed bill aims to close loopholes and improve coordination among law enforcement agencies to combat illicit financial activities.

National Crime Agency Warns of Criminals Exploiting Art Storage Facilities to Evade Sanctions

The National Crime Agency (NCA) in the UK has issued a warning about criminals using artwork storage facilities to evade sanctions. These facilities, which are often used by wealthy individuals and art collectors, provide a convenient way to store valuable artwork.

Money Laundering in Football: How Criminals Exploit the Sport for Illicit Funds

Football has become a target for criminals seeking to hide illicit funds. There are various cases of money laundering within the football industry, including the use of player transfers, sponsorship deals, and club ownership. There is a need for stronger regulations and international collaboration to combat this and protect the integrity of the sport.

 

SanctionsSanctions

US Imposes Sanctions on UAE Shipping Firm for Alleged Support of Iran's Missile Program

The United States has imposed sanctions on a shipping firm based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for allegedly aiding Iran's missile program. The company, which operates in the UAE and China, is accused of facilitating the transport of goods and materials for Iran's missile development.

EU Imposes Sanctions on Six Individuals for Financing Hamas

The targeted individuals are accused of providing financial support to Hamas through various means, including money transfers and fundraising activities. The sanctions freeze their assets and prohibit them from traveling within the EU. 

UK and US Impose Sanctions on Individuals Linked to Hamas' Financial Network

The UK and US have imposed sanctions on key individuals involved in Hamas' financial network. These measures aim to disrupt the group's ability to raise funds and carry out terrorist activities. The sanctions freeze the assets of these individuals and prohibit any financial dealings with them. 

EU to Impose Sanctions on Russia for Cyberattacks and Disinformation Activities

The European Union (EU) plans to impose its 13th round of sanctions against Russia due to its alleged involvement in cyberattacks and disinformation campaigns. The EU accuses Russia of targeting member states and institutions, including the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). 

Three Arrested in the Netherlands for Allegedly Violating Russian Sanctions 

Three individuals have been arrested in the Netherlands for allegedly evading Russian sanctions. The suspects are accused of illegally exporting goods to Russia, including military technology, without obtaining the necessary permits. 

Gambling_GamingGaming and Gambling

Canada's Financial Intelligence Agency Raises Concerns Over Money Laundering Risks in Online Gambling Sites 

The agency has expressed concerns about online gambling sites being exploited by money launderers. These sites provide an easy way for criminals to convert illicit funds into legitimate winnings. The agency has called for increased regulation and monitoring of these platforms to prevent further abuse.

 

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