money-laundering-solicitor

Money Laundering

Money laundering is recognised as a problem of increasing importance in the UK and worldwide. While it is impossible to produce a reliable estimate of the amount of money laundered each year the figure is thought to be in the billions worldwide. In the UK alone there are more than 200,000 reports of suspected money laundering submitted annually to the authorities.

We assist individuals suspected of involvement in substantive money laundering offences under the Proceeds of Crime Act in 2002 (POCA) and those professionals under investigation for other regulatory violations that carry a criminal sanction.

The POCA substantive offences are broad in scope which means that it is easy for someone to inadvertently commit a money laundering offence by dealing with tainted funds or criminal property, by for example allowing someone to pay and then withdraw illicit funds using your bank account.

As these types of offences are relatively easy to prove they are increasingly relied on in cases of fraud where the prosecution may otherwise face obstacles in establishing all the elements of their case.

Professionals in the Regulated Sector

money laundering lawyer

Accountants, bank staff, lawyers, estate agents, those working in financial institutions and in certain other industries have heavy obligations to both carry out checks on prospective clients and report any suspicions of money laundering if reasonable grounds for suspicion exist or face criminal sanctions.

Tipping off clients about the making of such reports also constitutes a separate offence. Recently the FSA has imposed heavy financial penalties on financial institutions that have failed to implement the correct AML procedures and conduct proper enquiries on their clients.

Roger Sahota is a member of the Law Society’s Anti - Money Laundering Directory. The practice provides advice and assistance to companies and individuals under investigation for regulatory breaches. The firm also assists companies in auditing exisiting AML procedures and devising internal anti-money laundering (AML) compliance programs in accordance with UK AML rules and regulations.

As these types of offences are relatively easy to prove they are increasingly relied on in cases of fraud where the prosecution may otherwise face obstacles in establishing all the elements of their case.