Business Crime & Fraud
“They are fantastic – they are experts who are cerebral and think intellectually about issues.”
CHAMBERS UK 2021
The UK has some of the toughest money laundering legislation in the world. Under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, the offence carries a maximum sentence of 14 years imprisonment accompanied by the almost inevitable threat of restraint and confiscation proceedings.
Prosecuting authorities are increasingly eager to take advantage of the wide range of offences that constitute money laundering, and which allow them to spread their investigative net wider than just those individuals who are charged with fraud offences alone. The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has recently acknowledged the usefulness of the proceeds of crime legislation now that the Bribery Act 2010 is in force and intends to investigate money laundering with renewed vigour alongside allegations of corruption.
Our lawyers frequently act for professionals who find themselves unexpectedly caught up in money laundering investigations, whether as witnesses or suspects. We offer expert advice on what steps can be taken to minimise the impact of such an investigation.
We also advise solicitors, accountants and other professionals in finance and banking on the stringent anti-money laundering compliance measures required by the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017, which superseded the Money Laundering Regulations 2007. The importance of these regulations, breaches of which may involve financial penalties and possible imprisonment, has been recently subject to intense Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) scrutiny who are concerned that a number of financial institutions in the UK fail to take adequate steps to establish the provenance of funds and that some firms still have serious weaknesses in anti-money laundering controls.
At Corker Binning we offer expert advice on these issues. We also currently act on a number of matters where individuals are facing criminal prosecution for breaching the Money Laundering Regulations.
Partner Jessica Parker is a member of the Law Society’s advice panel for anti-money laundering matters, and the firm is retained by one of the leading accountancy firms to advise on money laundering.
Our lawyers have recently advised on the following matters:
- Advising numerous companies and funds (both in the regulated and non-regulated sectors) on compliance with their money laundering obligations under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, when to make suspicious activity reports to the National Crime Agency and how to comply with the provisions on tipping-off and prejudicing an investigation.
- Advising an overseas political party on a major Met police investigation into money laundering arising from alleged terrorist activities.
- Advising a number of witnesses at a major bank in connection with an SFO investigation into suspected money laundering and failure to report.
- Acting for one of the main defendants in a $36 million international money laundering case tried in the UK and involving Nigeria’s mobile telephone provider.
- Advising two major high street banks on behalf of employees interviewed or investigated either for actual money laundering or for failure to report suspicion of money laundering offences. In both cases we persuaded police to drop their investigations.
- Advising many individuals in the well publicised operation by the Metropolitan Police called Operation Rize in which three London safe depositories were raided and 6,700 deposit boxes opened and searched.
- Acting for a foreign national extradited back to the UK to face charges for laundering the proceeds of drug trafficking.