This week, there have been three breaking news stories that are relevant to your AML/CFT compliance regimes;
- Auckland lawyer and accountant laundered proceeds from a New Zealand gang’s criminal enterprise. The New Zealand gang has connections to the Mexican Sinaloa drug cartel;
- A Gisborne farming family’s assets have been frozen as they are accused by the IRD and New Zealand police of engaging in a $16 million GST fraud over four years;
- A Hamilton couple admits to engaging in benefit fraud to illegally access almost $ 200k
Why are these relevant to my business’ AML/CFT compliance regime?
Turn again to page 10 of the FIU’s National Risk Assessment 2018, and you’ll see these news stories this week match the exact three predicate criminal offences the New Zealand Police requires you to be aware of;
- Drug offending;
- Tax offending.
In each of these stories, there were dozens of New Zealand AML/CFT reporting entities that dealt with these people engaging in money laundering. It’s very likely that suspicious activity reports (SARs) filed through the goAML portal assisted the Police in taking action on these cases.
What should I do now?
Show these to that board member who always says to you “bah, there’s no money laundering in New Zealand” or that senior manager who says “nah we don’t need to file a SAR on that evidence of benefit fraud, that’s not criminal activity”.
There is money laundering taking place in New Zealand, economic crime is criminal activity, and these examples illustrate the purpose of your AML/CFT compliance regime.