Outreach Enhances AML Compliance
Efforts to ensure the Cayman Islands meets and exceeds international anti-money laundering (AML) standards were further boosted this month, with online outreach led by the Anti-Money Laundering Steering Group (AMLGS).
The theme of the webinar, conducted over Zoom, was Typologies and Red Flags, Money Laundering and Predicate Offences. Three criminal offences featured were: securities fraud, tax crimes and corruption. The session was directed at specific audiences from within the industry, particularly Money-Laundering Reporting Officers/Compliance Officers (MLROs and MLCOs) from financial institutions and Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs).
Attendees benefitted from a series of sessions, panel discussions and the opportunity to ask questions related to topics on risk and red flags associated with common predicate offences for money laundering.
The first module was delivered by Crown Counsel (Financial Crime) Jacob Taylor on Foreign Predicates for Money Laundering – The Legal Framework and Securities Fraud.
In the course of his presentation, Mr. Taylor stressed the need for MLROs and MLCOs across all financial entities and DNFBPs to ensure that they understand their responsibilities under the law when it comes to money laundering, in light of the need for the Cayman Islands to ensure it has robust mechanisms in place to mitigate the risk associated with offences connected to securities fraud.
The following sessions included Financial Investigations Specialist Daniel Bryant on Risk indicators relating to foreign tax fraud – Typologies and Red flags and Corruption as a foreign predicate – Typologies and Red flags presented by the Director of the Financial Reporting Authority (FRA) RJ Berry.
The webinar was moderated by the National Coordinator for the AMLSG, Elisabeth Lees, who stated: “While the Cayman Islands’ Observation Period by the FATF has come to an end, we do not intend to let up with the progress we are making as a jurisdiction in terms of anti-money laundering (AML), countering the financing of terrorism (CFT) and proliferation financing (CPF).
“These kind of outreach events are essential to ensure we continue to meet and exceed international standards, by ensuring those persons responsible for compliance have the very latest information, delivered by international specialists in their fields,” Ms. Lees explained.
In total, 98 persons attended the online session; a survey conducted after the webinar revealed that over 80% of respondents left with an enhanced understanding of the topics tabled. Thirty five percent stated that they would review their approach to ML/TF/PF risks faced by their entity as a result of the webinar, and 81% responded that the webinar content would help them educate others in their organisation.
The final outcome of the Observation Period, which started in February 2019 and concluded on October 23, 2020, is expected to be announced by the FATF in February 2021.