The Money Laundering Regulations new rules significantly extend the scope of the law to apply to a wider range of 'relevant business'.
Under the regulations, lawyers, accountants, casino operators and estate agents are obliged to report any suspicious activity to the National Criminal Intelligence Service (NCIS), regardless of the amount of money which is involved.
Those failing to file reports risk a prison sentence of up to five years, while those who assist in money laundering face jail terms of up to 14 years.
Please contact us if you are concerned about any implications the laws may have for you and your business relationships.
High value dealers
The regulations apply to businesses that deal in 'high value goods', such as art, jewellery and cars.
Companies which handle high value cash payments of more than 15,000 euros (circa £10,000) must register with HM Revenue & Customs. (The term 'cash' applies to notes, coins and travellers' cheques in any currency).
Businesses must also obtain 'satisfactory' proof of the potential client's identity and residence. This is defined as 'evidence which is reasonably capable of establishing (and does in fact establish to the satisfaction of the person who obtains it) that the applicant for business is the person he claims to be'.
High value dealers are obliged to report any suspicions they may have relating to the source of the money.
They must also appoint a Money Laundering Reporting Officer, and introduce appropriate internal procedures for reporting incidents.
In addition, they must ensure that staff are sufficiently trained so as to be able to spot potential cases of money laundering.
Click here to view the Money Laundering Regulations 2003.
Click here to access the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.
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