In our post-referendum vacuum it may be interesting to note that the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA) was introduced in response to the second EU directive on money laundering. Moreover, as the authors of this helpful volume also point out, the Fourth Money Laundering Directive will come into force from June 2017. A Treasury consultation inviting views and evidence on the steps to be taken to transpose it into national law was only launched in September. Quite what will occur post-Brexit remains to be seen.
This book, produced by compliance experts, is an accessible guide to a difficult topic.
It breaks down into four main parts, plus source materials. The first deals with the main legislation, offering an overview, setting out the main offences under POCA and the Terrorism Act 2000, before addressing legal professional privilege and disclosures.
The authors point out, for example, that possession can be passive. If a law firm has funds in its client account and suspicions then arise as to their provenance, liability could arise under section 329 of POCA if the adviser does nothing.
The Money Laundering Regulations take up seven chapters in the second part, including the client due diligence process. This is explored in some detail, covering not just individual and corporate identification, but also identification procedures for other bodies, including trusts, foundations, education establishments and pension funds.
Authors: Matthew Moore, Diane Price
£75, Professional Compliance Publishing Ltd
The third part deals with property fraud and other financial crime reporting obligations where liability may be either criminal or regulatory.
The focus is then switched to practice areas in the fourth part. For each work type covered, the book examines the main risks of potential liability under the key acts and when disclosure might be required. Each chapter carries a case study by way of illustration.
Finally, the book sets out a template anti-money laundering policy which derives from the Solicitors Office Procedures Manual (from the same publishers) which can be downloaded by subscribers to infolegal.co.uk.
A couple of years ago the SRA suggested that the value of money laundering activity could be as much as £57bn annually. Whatever it might be worth, this publication takes on a complex subject we all need to know more about and addresses it with a good deal of expertise and method, offering guidance where there might otherwise be uncertainty.
Tony Roe is a family law arbitrator and principal of Tony Roe Divorce & Family Law Solicitors, Theale, Reading. He is also a member of the Law Society’s Family Section and Small Firms Division committees