Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 15

Money Laundering Related Abstracts

15 Data Mining Techniques for Anti-Money Laundering

Authors: M. Sai Veerendra

Abstract:

Today, money laundering (ML) poses a serious threat not only to financial institutions but also to the nation. This criminal activity is becoming more and more sophisticated and seems to have moved from the cliché of drug trafficking to financing terrorism and surely not forgetting personal gain. Most of the financial institutions internationally have been implementing anti-money laundering solutions (AML) to fight investment fraud activities. However, traditional investigative techniques consume numerous man-hours. Recently, data mining approaches have been developed and are considered as well-suited techniques for detecting ML activities. Within the scope of a collaboration project on developing a new data mining solution for AML Units in an international investment bank in Ireland, we survey recent data mining approaches for AML. In this paper, we present not only these approaches but also give an overview on the important factors in building data mining solutions for AML activities.

Keywords: Data Mining, Clustering, Money Laundering, anti-money laundering solutions

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14 Combating Money Laundering and Inroads into Banking Secrecy: Evidence from Malaysia

Authors: Aspalella A. Rahman

Abstract:

It is widely accepted that the investigation of money laundering and the tracing and confiscation of criminal proceeds have intruded into the principles of banking secrecy. The inroads into banking secrecy present serious threats to democracy, and more importantly, to the traditional banker-customer relationship. It is generally accepted that the fight against money laundering is in conflict with the secrecy rule. Banking secrecy is a customer privilege whereas combating crime is critical for public safety and security. Indeed, achieving a proper balance is a desirable goal. But how we go about achieving such a balance is a question encountered by many law enforcement authorities. Therefore, this paper examines the effect of disclosure under the Malaysian anti-money laundering laws on the traditional duty of banks to keep the customer’s information confidential. It also analyzes whether the Malaysian laws provide a right balance between a duty to keep customer’s information secret and a duty to disclose such information in the fight against money laundering. On closer inspection, it is submitted that the Malaysian laws provide sufficient safeguards to ensure that the disclosure of customer’s information is carried out in a manner that is not prejudicial to the interest of legitimate customers. This is a positive approach that could protect the innocent customers from being mistreated by the law. Ultimately, it can be said that the growing threat of global money laundering and terrorism makes the overriding of banking secrecy justified because without a flow of information from the banks, the effective prevention of the menace is not possible.

Keywords: Money Laundering, Confidentiality, anti-money laundering law, banker-customer relationship, banking secrecy

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13 Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism

Authors: Covadonga Mallada Fernández

Abstract:

Economic development and globalization of international markets have created a favourable atmosphere for the emergence of new forms of crime such as money laundering or financing of terrorism, which may contribute to destabilized and damage economic systems. In particular, money laundering have acquired great importance since the 11S attacks, what has caused on the one hand, the establishment and development of preventive measures and, on the other hand, a progressive hardening of penal measures. Since then, the regulations imposed to fight against money laundering have been viewed as key components also in the fight against terrorist financing. Terrorism, at the beginning, was a “national” crime connected with internal problems of the State (for instance the RAF in Germany or ETA in Spain) but in the last 20 years has started to be an international problem that is connected with the defence and security of the States. Therefore, the new strategic concept for the defense and security of NATO has a comprehensive list of security threats to the Alliance, such as terrorism, international instability, money laundering or attacks on cyberspace, among others. With this new concept, money laundering and terrorism has become a priority in the national defense. In this work we will analyze the methods to combat these new threats to the national security. We will study the preventive legislations to combat money laundering and financing of terrorism, the UIF that exchange information between States, and the hawala-Banking.

Keywords: Terrorism, Money Laundering, control of financial flows, financing of terrorism

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12 Preventing Corruption in Dubai: Governance, Contemporary Strategies and Systemic Flaws

Authors: Graham Brooks, Belaisha Bin Belaisha, Hakkyong Kim

Abstract:

The problem of preventing and/or reducing corruption is a major international problem. This paper, however, specifically focuses on how organisations in Dubai are tackling the problem of money laundering. This research establishes that Dubai has a clear international anti-money laundering framework but suffers from some national weaknesses such as diverse anti-money laundering working practice, lack of communication, sharing information and disparate organisational vested self-interest.

Keywords: Governance, Prevention, Corruption, Strategies, Money Laundering

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11 Money Laundering Risk Assessment in the Banking Institutions: An Experimental Approach

Authors: Yusarina Mat-Isa, Zuraidah Mohd-Sanusi, Mohd-Nizal Haniff, Paul A. Barnes

Abstract:

In view that money laundering has become eminent for banking institutions, it is an obligation for the banking institutions to adopt a risk-based approach as the integral component of the accepted policies on anti-money laundering. In doing so, those involved with the banking operations are the most critical group of personnel as these are the people who deal with the day-to-day operations of the banking institutions and are obligated to form a judgement on the level of impending risk. This requirement is extended to all relevant banking institutions staff, such as tellers and customer account representatives for them to identify suspicious customers and escalate it to the relevant authorities. Banking institutions staffs, however, face enormous challenges in identifying and distinguishing money launderers from other legitimate customers seeking genuine banking transactions. Banking institutions staffs are mostly educated and trained with the business objective in mind to serve the customers and are not trained to be “detectives with a detective’s power of observation”. Despite increasing awareness as well as trainings conducted for the banking institutions staff, their competency in assessing money laundering risk is still insufficient. Several gaps have prompted this study including the lack of behavioural perspectives in the assessment of money laundering risk in the banking institutions. Utilizing experimental approach, respondents are randomly assigned within a controlled setting with manipulated situations upon which judgement of the respondents is solicited based on various observations related to the situations. The study suggests that it is imperative that informed judgement is exercised in arriving at the decision to proceed with the banking services required by the customers. Judgement forms a basis of opinion for the banking institution staff to decide if the customers posed money laundering risk. Failure to exercise good judgement could results in losses and absorption of unnecessary risk into the banking institutions. Although the banking institutions are exposed with choices of automated solutions in assessing money laundering risk, the human factor in assessing the risk is indispensable. Individual staff in the banking institutions is the first line of defence who are responsible for screening the impending risk of any customer soliciting for banking services. At the end of the spectrum, the individual role involvement on the subject of money laundering risk assessment is not a substitute for automated solutions as human judgement is inimitable.

Keywords: Risk Assessment, Money Laundering, experimental approach, banking institutions

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10 Position of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation on the Matter of Restricting Constitutional Rights of Citizens Concerning Banking Secrecy

Authors: A. V. Shashkova

Abstract:

The aim of the present article is to analyze the position of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation on the matter of restricting the constitutional rights of citizens to inviolability of professional and banking secrecy in effecting controlling activities. The methodological ground of the present Article represents the dialectic scientific method of the socio-political, legal and organizational processes with the principles of development, integrity, and consistency, etc. The consistency analysis method is used while researching the object of the analysis. Some public-private research methods are also used: the formally-logical method or the comparative legal method, are used to compare the understanding of the ‘secrecy’ concept. The aim of the present article is to find the root of the problem and to give recommendations for the solution of the problem. The result of the present research is the author’s conclusion on the necessity of the political will to improve Russian legislation with the aim of compliance with the provisions of the Constitution. It is also necessary to establish a clear balance between the constitutional rights of the individual and the limit of these rights when carrying out various control activities by public authorities. Attempts by the banks to "overdo" an anti-money laundering law under threat of severe sanctions by the regulators actually led to failures in the execution of normal economic activity. Therefore, individuals face huge problems with payments on the basis of clearing, in addition to problems with cash withdrawals. The Bank of Russia sets requirements for banks to execute Federal Law No. 115-FZ too high. It is high place to attract political will here. As well, recent changes in Russian legislation, e.g. allowing banks to refuse opening of accounts unilaterally, simplified banking activities in the country. The article focuses on different theoretical approaches towards the concept of “secrecy”. The author gives an overview of the practices of Spain, Switzerland and the United States of America on the matter of restricting the constitutional rights of citizens to inviolability of professional and banking secrecy in effecting controlling activities. The Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation basing on the Constitution of the Russian Federation has its special understanding of the issue, which should be supported by further legislative development in the Russian Federation.

Keywords: Money Laundering, constitutional court, restriction of constitutional rights, bank secrecy, control measures, financial control, banking information

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9 The Dark Side of the Fight against Organised Crime

Authors: Ana M. Prieto del Pino

Abstract:

As is well known, UN Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (1988) was a landmark regarding the seizure of proceeds of crime. Depriving criminals of the profits from their activity became a priority at an international level in the fight against organised crime. Enabling confiscation of proceeds of illicit traffic in narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, criminalising money laundering and confiscating the proceeds thereof are the three measures taken in order to achieve that purpose. The beginning of 21st century brought the declaration of war on corruption and on the illicit enjoyment of the profits thereof onto the international scene. According to the UN Convention against Transnational Organised Crime (2000), States Parties should adopt the necessary measures to enable the confiscation of proceeds of crime derived from offences (or property of equivalent value) and property, equipment and other instrumentalities used in offences covered by that Convention. The UN Convention against Corruption (2003) states asset recovery explicitly as a fundamental principle and sets forth measures aiming at the direct recovery of property through international cooperation in confiscation. Furthermore, European legislation has made many significant strides forward in less than twenty years concerning money laundering, confiscation, and asset recovery. Crime does not pay, let there be no doubt about it. Nevertheless, we must be very careful not to sing out of tune with individual rights and legal guarantees. On the one hand, innocent individuals and businesses must be protected, since they should not pay for the guilty ones’ faults. On the other hand, the rule of law must be preserved and not be tossed aside regarding those who have carried out criminal activities. An in-depth analysis of judicial decisions on money laundering and confiscation of proceeds of crime issued by European national courts and by the European Court of Human Rights in the last decade has been carried out from a human rights, legal guarantees and criminal law basic principles’ perspective. The undertaken study has revealed the violation of the right to property, of the proportionality principle legal and the infringement of basic principles of states’ domestic substantive and procedural criminal law systems. The most relevant ones have to do with the punishment of money laundering committed through negligence, non-conviction based confiscation and a too-far reaching interpretation of the notion of ‘proceeds of crime’. Almost everything in life has a bright and a dark side. Confiscation of criminal proceeds and asset recovery are not an exception to this rule.

Keywords: Human Rights, Money Laundering, Organized Crime, confiscation

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8 Money Laundering and Governance in Cryptocurrencies: The Double-Edged Sword of Blockchain Technology

Authors: Yani Shi, Jiaqi Yan

Abstract:

With the growing popularity of bitcoin transactions, criminals have exploited the bitcoin like cryptocurrencies, and cybercriminals such as money laundering have thrived. Unlike traditional currencies, the Internet-based virtual currencies can be used anonymously via the blockchain technology underpinning. In this paper, we analyze the double-edged sword features of blockchain technology in the context of money laundering. In particular, the traceability feature of blockchain-based system facilitates a level of governance, while the decentralization feature of blockchain-based system may bring governing difficulties. Based on the analysis, we propose guidelines for policy makers in governing blockchain-based cryptocurrency systems.

Keywords: Traceability, Money Laundering, Decentralization, Cryptocurrency, Blockchain

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7 A Regulatory Analysis on Legal Problems of BitCoin

Authors: Fady Tawakol

Abstract:

BitCoin is a decentralized cryptocurrency that can be used without the need of traditional central banks to accomplish any e-commerce trade. The use of such currency could facilitate new economic interactions and linkages. However, without effective and efficient regulations, cryptocurrency transactions are mostly used by criminals to commit crimes such as money laundering, theft, and blackmailing. And because law is one step behind technological developments, this paper discusses the importance of regulations and supervision for the BitCoin-system, to provide unified regulatory solutions for our digital future in the Middle East. It will provide a detailed analysis of the legal nature of BitCoin along with, its regulation with respect to criminal and civil law.

Keywords: Money Laundering, bitcoin, financial protection, crypto currency

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6 Accountants and Anti-Money Laundering Compliance in the Real Estate Sector

Authors: Mark E. Lokanan, Liz Lee

Abstract:

This paper aims to examine the role of accountants as gatekeepers in anti-money laundering compliance in real estate transactions. The paper seeks to answer questions on ways in which accountants are involved in real estate transactions and mandatory compliance with regulatory authorities in Canada. The data for the study came from semi-structured interviews with accountants, lawyers, and government officials. Preliminary results reveal that there is a conflict between accountants’ obligation to disclose and loyalty to their clients. Accountants often do not see why they are obligated to disclose their clients' information to government agencies. The importance of the client in terms of the amount of revenue contributed to the accounting firm also plays a significant role in accountants' reporting decision-making process. Although the involvement of accountants in real estate purchase and sale transactions is limited to lawyers or notaries, they are often involved in designing financing schemes, which may involve money laundering activities. The paper is of wider public policy interests to both accountants and regulators. It is hard not to see Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) Canada and government regulators using the findings to better understand the decision-making processes of accountants in their reporting practices to regulatory authorities.

Keywords: Real Estate, Compliance, Money Laundering, Legislation, disclosure

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5 From Al Capone to Silk Road: Money Laundering Regulation for Cryptocurrency on the Horizon

Authors: Chinelle van der Westhuizen

Abstract:

The introduction of cryptocurrencies as an alternative payment system have placed governments in a challenging position in relation to the regulatory status of cryptocurrencies and the money laundering activities associated with it. In April 2018, the Australian government amended its Anti-Money Laundering laws to regulate digital currency exchanges in an attempt to regulate money laundering activities and the introduction of ‘know-your-customer’ policies within the digital currency sector. Part one of this paper explores the use of cryptocurrencies for money laundering purposes and its significance to money launderers. Part two studies the efficacy of the current Australian Anti-Money Laundering laws and whether more can be done on a regulatory level. This paper will, therefore, highlight recent court decisions and legislation in terms of money laundering activities within these alternative payment systems in Australia and the United Kingdom. Part three of the paper will further analyze recent case studies by the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre and the Office for Professional Body Anti-Money Laundering Supervision in the United Kingdom as the regulatory bodies for money laundering activities. The case studies and research will explore the legal disputes and future regulation concerning the use of cryptocurrencies and money laundering on a national as well as international level. This paper intends to highlight that although cryptocurrency is viewed as an innovative global phenomenon and an alternative method of payment, there are a number of legal issues associated with its use that indicate the need for regulatory reform. It is recommended in this paper that the Financial Action Task Force, International Monetary Fund as well as concerned governments have ongoing discussions on these regulatory issues and how to address it appropriately, whether through legislation or universal guidelines. Therefore, the conclusion of this paper will emphasize the benefits of a regulatory regime for money laundering activities within the cryptocurrency space and that the lack of such a regime may be detrimental to countries.

Keywords: Regulation, Money Laundering, Cryptocurrency, know-your-customer policy

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4 The Integration of Prosecutorial Discretion in the Anti-Money Laundering Regime in Nigeria: A Focus on Politically Exposed Persons

Authors: Chineduum Okpala

Abstract:

Nigeria, since her independence, has been engulfed in financial crimes of different forms. From embezzlement and conversion of public funds by public servants to stealing, contract inflation, and money laundering. Money laundering in Nigeria, particularly by political exposed persons, has been an issue of concern since independence. Corruption has been endemic, and Nigeria needs to integrate pro-active measures to show to the international community that it is ready to move against this vice. This paper discusses the negative effect of corruption and its effect on prosecutorial discretion. It also takes cognisance of the policy and aims of the anti-money laundering (AML) policy as enacted in Nigeria. It also takes as valid the assumption that the effective application of the rule of law will improve the efficacy of the Nigerian regime. In this regard, the perspective is internal to the Nigerian regime and its internal policy discourse which also reflect its policy discourse at international level. This paper takes notice of the typology of money laundering (ML) offences that most affect Nigeria, which hinges on corruption and abuse of office by a specific type of person, politically exposed persons (PEP). This typology of money laundering offence appears to be the most prevalent in developing nations like Nigeria. The application of essential principles of law provides an opportunity for the internalisation of the rule of law in the anti-money laundering regime in Nigeria, which could aid the successful prosecution of politically exposed persons on money laundering offences. The rule of law and how well the Nigerian legal system manages to deal with the interface between high level politics and the criminal justice system in Nigeria cannot be understood from internal sources but must be developed as a genuine but critical account informed by perspectives external to the Nigerian regime. If the efficacy of the regime is to be assessed in view of notorious failures of the regime, an external assessment is needed. Hence the paper discusses the need to integrate the essential principles of law in the application of prosecutorial discretion in the anti-money laundering regime in Nigeria, particularly with politically exposed persons. The paper highlights jurisdiction where prosecutorial discretion is integrated into the anti-money laundering regime in accordance to the rule of law which forms a basis for comparative analysis of the success of the anti-money laundering regime in Nigeria. This paper discusses why the application of prosecutorial discretion should not be used as a tool to extricate or avail the rich and powerful in the society from justice. The paper aims to argue that the successful prosecution of politically exposed persons, will raise the confidence of the citizens and the international community in the anti-money laundering regime in Nigeria.

Keywords: Corruption, Money Laundering, Nigeria, politically exposed persons

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3 Anti-Money Laundering and Countering of Terrorist Financing: The Role of Domestic Financial Institutions to Prevent Money Laundering

Authors: Dinesh Sivaguru, Kamal Thilakasiri

Abstract:

Preventing money laundering and terrorist financing is a major national and international problem today. Several attempts have been made to prevent money laundering by national and international dimension. These are often counteracted by the multi dynamic nature of the crimes. However, launders are often to use remittance systems to clean their ill-gotten money. This study presents the role of domestic financial institutions and the effective practices and actions should implement within domestic financial institutions to control and prevent financial crimes. This thesis highlights the progress that is required to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing, further it is an original contribution to the knowledge in an under researched field in Sri Lanka.

Keywords: Financial Institutions, Money Laundering, terrorists financing, regulatory bodies

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2 Understanding How Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism Are Conducted through the Real Estate Sector in the Middle East and North Africa Region

Authors: Haytham Yassine

Abstract:

This research seeks to identify how money laundering activities are executed through the real estate sector. This article provides academics with literature on the topic and provides scholars, and practitioners with a better understanding of the risks and challenges involved. Data are gathered through survey in the Middle East and North Africa region and review of the available research. The results of the analysis will help identifying the factors attracting criminals to the real estate sector and develop an understanding of the methods used to launder illicit funds through this sector and the indicators of suspicion for reporting entities. Further analysis reveals the risks posed by money laundering and terrorist financing on the real estate sector and challenges facing states in this regard.

Keywords: Money Laundering, terrorism financing, Middle East and North Africa, real estate sector

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1 The Conduct of Laundering Money through Transport of Cash in the Middle East and North Africa Region

Authors: Haytham Yassine

Abstract:

This article mainly aims to detect and understand how money laundering activities are executed by transport of cash, identifying the underlying factors and separating legitimate from illegitimate usage of cash and how it is being used. This research provides academics with additional literature and provides bank supervisors and practitioners with a better understanding of sources and uses of cash in criminal activities and how cash is used in the laundering mechanism. Data are gathered through survey in the Middle East and North Africa region and review of the available research. The results of the analysis will help distinguish the factors affecting preference for cash rather other payment instruments in the region, identify what causes the tendency to launder illegal proceeds through cash transportation and how illegal cash is being laundered and moved. On the other hand, this paper sheds the light on major cash generating criminal activities, its sources and main destinations.

Keywords: Money Laundering, cash, terrorism financing, illegitimate activities

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