The History Of Money Laundering
Money laundering can be defined quite simply as the process of filtering the proceeds of criminal activity through a series of accounts or other financial
products in order to give it apparent legitimacy or to make its origins difficult to trace.
Following a European Directive in 1991 on the prevention of money laundering, two further important definitions were included in order to clarify the
- Property: This means assets of every kind, tangible or intangible, movable or immoveable, as well as legal documents giving title to such assets.
- Criminal Activity: this means a crime as specified in the Vienna convention including any other criminal activity designated as such by each member
In 1987, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on Money Laundering was created as an international organisation dedicated to combat the fight
against criminal money. The prevention of money laundering within the financial industry has for a long while been an important objective of many
governments around the world. The European commission play a major role within the FATF with many of its EU member states making up a
significant proportion its 30 members.
Proceeds of Crime Act 2002
The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 saw a pooling together of a number of acts and amendments - Most notably, the act deals with the laundering of the
proceeds of all forms of crime. No longer were the proceeds of drug-related crimes separated from all other forms.
In relation to reporting suspicious money laundering activity, the new act also extends this again to all forms of crime - This had previously been
restricted to drugs or terrorism offences.
Under the Proceeds of Crime act 2002 there are three principle money laundering offences:
- Concealing criminal property: This is essentially property, which a person knows or suspects to be the proceeds of any criminal activity.
- Arranging: This happens when a person becomes involved in a process which they know or suspect will enable someone