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Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing

(For information on the offence of money laundering please see financial and complex crime.)

Authorised Deposit-taking Institutions (ADIs) such as banks and building societies, and other financial institutions (for example casinos and money changers) are subject to a range of prudential and other regulation. Navigating the nuances of these provisions is a constant challenge for in-house counsel and external legal advisers.

One such nuance is in the interaction of ss 41 and 51 of the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing (AML/CTF) Act 2006 (Cth) with the money laundering provisions found in Division 400 of the Criminal Code (Cth). I discuss it here.

I believe I am uniquely qualified to advise on the AML/CTF Act 2006 and related matters. As a Deputy Counsel with the Australian Federal Police I was a member of the national management team of the Australian Government’s Criminal Assets Confiscation Taskforce. The taskforce:

  • is a formal collaboration between the Australian Taxation Office, the Australian Crime Commission and the Australian Federal Police
  • works hand in hand with AUSTRAC to identify proceeds of crime, and then takes action to freeze and/or seize and restrain proceeds of crime (ie money that by definition is capable of being ‘laundered’) either under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 or taxation remedies.

I have 6 years’ experience in making rapid assessments on behalf of the Australian Government about whether given circumstances would justify a Court in finding that there was a reasonable suspicion that money is the proceeds of crime. As a delegate for 4 of those years I was responsible for deciding whether to apply to restrain (ie freeze) tainted property, and had authority to offer an undertaking as to damages on behalf of the Australian Government to secure such orders ex parte.

Advice

I am available to provide advice nationally to reporting entities (either via a firm of solicitors, or a direct brief from in-house counsel) on:

  • the AML/CTF Act 2006,
  • the Autonomous Sanctions Regulations 2011 and the Charter of the United Nations Act 1945, in relation to financial transactions with certain countries and politically exposed persons (PEPs), and
  • related matters.

I accept electronic briefs for discrete advice work. If you require urgent advice, for instance on the formulation of a Suspicious Matter Report (SMR), the exiting of a customer or otherwise, please telephone me on 0417 921 300.

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