Saturday , June 19 2021

Singapore Punish punishment for AML / CTF violations

Penalties arise for breach of the AML / CTF law and omission to send reports of suspicious transactions, while Singapore extends to deal with foreign FIUs.

Singapore Parliament on Monday (November 19th) fined a fine for individuals and companies involved in money laundering and terrorist financing (ML / TF), Channel NewsAsia reported.

"With banking and financial systems that go digital, money can now be quickly transferred between people and across borders with minimal hassle. It opens multiple laundering channels and supports terrorist activities," said Second Minister of Interior Josephine Teo on second reading laws in parliament. "The growing volume and complexity of financial transactions also makes it easier for regulators to detect violations."

In the past five years, there were about 70 criminal charges for money laundering each year, and in 2016, six were convicted of terrorism for funding the offense.

The Penalty for Serious Crimes and Anti-Counterterrorism (various changes) increases the maximum punishment for the ML / TF offense committed by a corporation of 1 million SGD (727,000 USD) to "more than 1 million SGD or twice the value of assets, financial services or financial transactions involved ".

There will also be a maximum penalty for failing to report suspicious transactions (STRs). The maximum fine for individuals will amount to 250,000 SGD (up to 20,000 SGD) and / or up to three years in prison. If it is a corporate offender, the maximum fine will amount to 500,000 SGD.

Failure to disclose police information that could help prevent terrorist financing or lead to arrests, persecution or conviction for terrorist financing will also be punished. A fine for professionals such as bankers will be raised from 50,000 SGD to 250,000 SGD and for corporations ranging from 250,000 SGD to 1 million SGD or twice the value of assets involved or provided. Sentences for non-professionals remain at 50,000 SGD and / or five years in prison.

The maximum penalty for disclosing information that could jeopardize the ongoing terrorist financing investigation would be raised from 30,000 SGD to 250,000 SGD and / or five years in prison.

The government is also concerned about money launderers in Singapore and will criminalize the possession or use of property suspected of benefiting from criminal behavior if the accused can not adequately explain how they came to property. According to the existing laws, the prosecution has to prove that money mul knows that the funds are related to criminal behavior. This can be difficult. The maximum sentence for the new criminal offense will be 150,000 SGD and / or three years in prison.

Changes are also facilitated by money laundering associated with overseas crimes, enabling the courts to make decisions based on the prosecution's evidence that the offense was committed abroad without having to resort to foreign governments or experts. At present, prosecutors are required to request a government certificate or testimony by a foreign legal expert to show that the offense has been committed abroad.

The second amendment facilitates the exchange of financial intelligence with foreign governments. Singapore's 50 arrangements with other countries will be expanded to 150 covering the Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) of overseas jurisdictions belonging to the Egmont Group.

Amendments have also been introduced to ensure Singapore's cross-border reporting (CBCRR), making it mandatory to file any amount of money that exceeds US $ 20,000 and give the courts the ability to make a warrant for the confiscation of a defendant convicted of the criminal offense of CBCRR.



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