OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – JULY 27

27th July 2018

USING SOCIAL MEDIA AND SOCIAL NETWORK ANALYSIS IN LAW ENFORCEMENT

This research report published on 18th July by the RAND Corporation in the US results from the expert panel convened in April 2017 by the National Institute of Justice to identify high-priority needs for law enforcement’s use of social media and social network analysis.  The panel discussed 5 core business cases for employing social media and social network analysis in law enforcement.  The 3 questions addressed in the research were –

  • How should social media data and social network analysis be used in law enforcement?
  • What security, privacy, and civil rights protections should be in place to ensure the appropriate and sustainable application of these technologies in law enforcement?
  • What needs does law enforcement have with respect to social media and social network analysis?

https://www.rand.org/vivisimo/cgi-bin/query-meta?v%3afile=viv_6CSGzh&v%3astate=root%7croot-0-20%7c0&url=https%3a%2f%2fwww.rand.org%2fpubs%2fresearch_reports%2fRR2301.html&rid=Ndoc3&v%3aframe=redirect&v%3aredirect-hash=6c3433075cd693d614b435d90ec25dba&

POLICE RECOVER STOLEN $20 MILLION RARE BLUE DIAMOND THAT WAS SMUGGLED OUT OF DUBAI IN A SHOE BOX

News 24 on 26th July reported that Dubai police said that they have recovered a rare blue diamond stolen by a security guard and smuggled out to Sri Lanka in a shoe box.  The guard worked at a money transfer company where the gem was stored.  The thief had hidden the diamond in a shoe box handed it to a relative headed for Sri Lanka on a boat.

https://www.news24.com/World/News/police-recover-stolen-20m-rare-blue-diamond-that-was-smuggled-out-of-dubai-in-a-shoe-box-20180726

IRELAND: ‘HUGE DROP’ IN GUN DEALERSHIPS LEADING TO ‘MORE SMUGGLING’

The Irish Times on 26th July carried a report saying that a “huge drop” in the number of gun dealerships in Ireland has led to a surge in the smuggling of shooting products into the country, according to the Irish Gun Traders Association (IGTA).  The number of gun dealers has significantly reduced from 840 in the late 1990s to just 263.  The IGTA blamed “overly-strict controls” and “bureaucratic conditions” on legitimate dealers.

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/huge-drop-in-gun-dealerships-leading-to-more-smuggling-1.3577318

HONDURAS: ‘PANDORA’S BOX’ CORRUPTION HEARING BEGINS IN COURT

Telesur on 26th July reported that 28 of the 38 defendants in the Honduran ‘Pandora’s Box’ embezzlement scandal have appeared in court.  The case involves the embezzlement of over $11.7 million in public funds earmarked for agricultural and horticultural projects, allegedly laundered through an NGO called We Are All Hondurans and channelled to National Party 2013 electoral campaigns, including current President Juan Orlando Hernandez’s first presidential run.  The money was allegedly also used to pay off members of the opposition Liberal Party.

https://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Honduras-Pandoras-Box-Corruption-Hearing-Begins-In-Court-20180726-0028.html?src=ilaw

TRADE FINANCE BANKS BEWARE: YOU ARE LIABLE UNDER BILLS OF LADING YOU NO LONGER HOLD

On 26th July, an article from Quadrant Chambers was concerned with the recent UK High Court case of Sea Master Shipping Inc v. Arab Bank (Switzerland) Limited (“The Sea Master”), saying that trade finance banks facilitate international trade by providing short-term, “self-liquidating” finance to their trader customers.  Being able to hold the bills of lading covering the cargoes they have financed to secure repayment of the purchase price, without getting involved in the underlying contract of carriage unless absolutely forced to, is crucial to their business model.  The decision means that such banks are subject to the jurisdiction of an arbitral tribunal appointed under bills of lading previously held by them as security, even if they were merely intermediate holders.  The dispute at the heart of the case involved the shipowners claiming demurrage (i.e. a charge payable to the owner of a chartered ship on failure to load or discharge the ship within an agreed time limit) from a Swiss trade finance bank that had financed the purchase of a cargo of soya bean meal by the ship’s charterers.

http://www.quadrantchambers.com/news/trade-finance-banks-beware-you-are-subject-to-arbitral-jurisdiction-under-bills-of-lading-you-no-longer-hold-chirag-karia-qc

UK LAW COMMISSION CONSULTATION ON SAR: AN OPPORTUNITY FOR WELCOME CHANGE, BUT THERE ARE RISKS FOR BUSINESS TOO

An article from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer on 25th July about the recently-announced Law Commission consultation document expresses some concerns about the possibility of a new corporate offence in this area based, in part, on the “failure to prevent” model first used in the Bribery Act.  It warns that having greater scope for corporate criminal liability may drive organisations to submit higher volumes of poor quality SAR on a ‘defensive’ basis — precisely the issue that reform needs to address.  Other policy concerns mentioned include the question: will the proposed corporate criminal liability offence lead to duplicative regulatory and criminal enforcement and would it result in the criminalisation of mere negligence (in particular when applied to the regulated sector)?  What would be the cost to non-regulated entities of putting in place the proper procedures to address this heightened criminal risk (assuming such an offence extends beyond the regulated sector), and would such cost be justified?

http://risk.freshfields.com/post/102ezlh/uk-law-commission-consultation-on-suspicious-activity-reportingan-opportunity-fo

PARENT COMPANY LIABILITY FOR HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES IN THE UK? WE NEED CLARITY

An article published by the Oxford Human Rights Hub on 24th July follows the judgments in recent Court of Appeal cases about the liability of UK-based parent companies for alleged human rights abuses of their subsidiaries in Africa.  The article says that the absence of national and international laws comprehensively addressing this issue created a space for creative arguments for and against holding parent companies accountable for the human rights abuses committed by their subsidiaries.  It says that while this is a dream situation for academics who can write articles speculating on what the law ought to be, it is detrimental to both victims and companies, and ultimately to the rule of law, as it is not clear what the law is.  The Supreme Court will have soon the possibility to rule in appeals of the two most recent cases.

http://ohrh.law.ox.ac.uk/parent-company-liability-for-human-rights-abuses-in-the-uk-we-need-clarity/

SOUTH SUDAN’S NEGOTIATIONS – LITTLE CHANCE OF COMPREHENSIVE PEACE DEAL, BUT OIL PRODUCTION AGREEMENT LIKELY

Janes.com on 25th July reported that South Sudan’s major parties to the peace talks are likely to eventually sign the peace agreement, but smaller parties disaffected by the peace agreement are likely to recommit themselves to the armed opposition to the new government.  Nevertheless, oil-related agreements between the Sudanese government and the South Sudanese negotiating parties are likely to be implemented and lead to an increase in South Sudanese oil output.  This analysis followed the South Sudan Opposition Alliance, a group of 9 opposition parties, rejecting the latest draft governance and power-sharing agreement on South Sudan.

http://www.janes.com/article/81990/south-sudan-s-prolonged-negotiations-highlight-unlikelihood-of-comprehensive-peace-deal-but-oil-production-agreement-likely?from_rss=1

MINDANAO AUTONOMOUS REGION LAW IMPROVES OUTLOOK FOR DEMOBILISING ISLAMIST MILITANTS IN SOUTHERN PHILIPPINES

Janes.com on 25th July reported that a new law in the Philippines mandates the creation of a new autonomous region in Mindanao and provides for a parliament and an independent regional judicial system.  It also allocates 5% of total government revenue to the region, increases the regional government’s share in taxes on natural resources in Muslim Mindanao, and provides an annual grant of $90 million during the next 10 years to rehabilitate conflict-affected areas.

http://www.janes.com/article/81994/passage-of-mindanao-autonomous-region-law-improves-outlook-for-demobilising-islamist-militants-in-southern-philippines?from_rss=1

US FIREARMS TRACING DATA 2017

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) traces firearms on behalf of thousands of federal, state, local and foreign law enforcement agencies.  Firearm traces are designed to assist law enforcement authorities in conducting investigations by tracking the sale and possession of specific firearms.  However, not all firearms used in crime are traced and not all firearms traced are used in crime.  On 24th July, the ATF released the report on firearms tracing in the US in 2017.

https://www.atf.gov/resource-center/firearms-trace-data-2017

five_fast_facts_about_ntc

NEW UK ANTI-CORRUPTION UNIT SEES OVER £680 MILLION WORTH OF ASSETS RESTRAINED

KYC 360 on 27th July reported that the value of assets restrained in the UK and overseas as a result of activity by Britain’s recently formed International Corruption Unit (ICU) exceeded £683 million at year end, with the cumulative amount of assets confiscated exceeding £55 million, according to the NCA annual report.  The unit was created in May 2015 as part of the UK Anti-Corruption Plan and investigates international bribery and corruption and related money laundering offences.

https://kyc360.com/news/new-uk-anti-corruption-unit-sees-over-680-million-worth-of-assets-restrained/

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES PASSES BILL ALLOWING WAIVERS OF US SANCTIONS FOR STATES BUYING FROM RUSSIA

Rferl on 27th July reported that the House has approved legislation allowing the President to waive penalties against countries that purchase weapons from sanctioned Russian defence companies if they are seeking closer ties with Washington – which, it is said, would help countries like India which had close ties with Moscow in the past but are now trying to “pull away from the Russian orbit”.  Besides India, Vietnam and Indonesia are other countries media have said might receive waivers from Russian sanctions under the provision.  The approved Bill must be merged with a Senate version of the defence Bill before it can be signed into law by President Trump.

https://www.rferl.org/a/us-house-passes-bill-allowing-waivers-of-russian-military-sanctions-mattis-india/29393248.html

ARMENIAN AUTHORITIES CHARGE EX-PRESIDENT KOCHARIAN OVER 2008 CRACKDOWN

Rferl on 26th July reported that Armenian authorities have charged former President Robert Kocharian with “overthrowing the constitutional order” and are seeking his pretrial detention on charges related to a crackdown on anti-government protesters in 2008.

https://www.rferl.org/a/armenian-authorities-charge-ex-president-kocharian-over-2008-crackdown/29392740.html

MOLDOVA: COUNCIL OF EUROPE MONEYVAL AML CONCERNED ABOUT MISLEADING MEDIA REPORTS

On 27th July, the Council of Europe reported that media reports in Moldova seem to wrongly suggest that the Law on Voluntary Declaration and Fiscal Stimulation, which was passed by the Moldovan Parliament on 26th July, had been analysed positively by an expert from Moneyval.  MONEYVAL has now clarified that it was not consulted on this law at any stage in the legislative process, nor was any international expert on behalf of MONEYVAL.

https://www.coe.int/en/web/portal/-/moldova-council-of-europe-anti-money-laundering-committee-concerned-about-misleading-media-reports

PRIVATE JETS – THE ACHILLES HEEL OF EU AIR TRAFFIC SECURITY?

EU Observer on 27th July reported that private passenger jets were exempted from the EU’s new Passenger Name Record Directive, aimed at combating terrorism, crime and smuggling – despite the concerns of police and MEPs.

https://euobserver.com/justice/142472

FISH AND HUMAN RIGHTS IN THAILAND: NO IMPROVEMENT, NO EU TRADE DEAL

EurActiv on 27th July carried an article saying that for years a trade agreement with Thailand has been hanging in the air but has been held back by inhumane conditions in the fishing industry.  Now, the EU wants to reopen the dialogue.  Thailand has been under pressure for the past 3 years as the EU, its third largest trading partner after China and Japan, is threatening to cease purchasing fishery products and had issued Thailand with 2 “yellow cards” over it in 2015.  Even without a ban, fish exports into the EU declined by around €240 million in 2017 compared to 2014.  Problems exist with exploitation of many of the 3.8 million foreign workers, mostly from Burma, Laos and Cambodia.

https://www.euractiv.com/section/global-europe/news/human-rights-in-thailand-no-improvement-no-trade-deal/

INTERNATIONAL ENVOYS ACCUSE BOSNIA LAWMAKERS OF UNDERMINING CRIME FIGHT

Reuters on 27th July reported that international envoys have accused some Bosnian lawmakers of damaging the fight against organised crime, corruption and terrorism by failing to pass a criminal code in line with international standards.  A deadline to bring the code into line has already been missed and the upper house of parliament has now further delayed a decision on the issue.

https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-bosnia-lawmaking/envoys-accuse-bosnia-lawmakers-of-undermining-crime-fight-idUKKBN1KH283?src=ilaw

ANTIGUA PM: WILL CO-OPERATE WITH INDIA ON MEHUL CHOKSI PNB FRAUD CASE

NDTV on 27th July reported that the Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister said that the Indian government has not approached the country on fugitive diamond jewellery, Mehul Choksi, who has secured citizenship of the Caribbean country, but promised all co-operation on the issue.  Choksi, wanted in connection with the Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case along with nephew, Nirav Modi, obtained Antiguan citizenship last year using its “citizenship by investment” programme.

https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/will-cooperate-with-india-antigua-pm-gaston-browne-on-mehul-choksi-fraud-case-1891083?src=ilaw

Meanwhile, Accountancy Daily reports that Antigua and Barbuda have signed the multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters bringing the total number of jurisdictions participating to 125.

https://www.accountancydaily.co/cch_uk/cln/news_006569_antigua_barbuda_convention_mutual_administrative?src=ilaw

UK CORRECTS SANCTIONS LISTING FOR COMMERCIAL BANK OF SYRIA

A Notice from HM Treasury on 27th July detailed a necessary amendment to the details on the UK Consolidated List, following an error in the original listing in the SWIFT/BIC Code shown for the bank.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/730124/Syria_Corrigenda_27072018.pdf

UK: CIGARETTE AND TOBACCO SMUGGLER JAILED FOR 5 YEARS

Belfast Live and others on 27th July reported that Sean Dolan, 43, from Newry, has been jailed for 5 years for his part in a multimillion pound cigarette smuggling scam.  He was part of a gang that smuggled 17million cigarettes and 1.4 tonnes of tobacco into the UK from SE Asia, and almost 1 million American Legend cigarettes were found in Dolan’s garage during a search of his home when customs officers moved in to bust the racket in late 2015.  The other 3 gang members Ian Pritchard, 51, Paul Smith, 47, and Ian Hindle, 39, were from Merseyside and were jailed for a total of more than 20 years.

https://www.belfastlive.co.uk/news/belfast-news/co-down-cigarette-smuggler-jailed-14962170

CFIUS REFORM LEGISLATION: 4 EARLY QUESTIONS INVESTORS AND COMPANIES NEED TO ASK

On 27th July, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati published an article about the final draft of the compromise version compiled from the US Senate and House of Representatives versions pf Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act (FIRRMA), which would significantly expand the jurisdiction and reform the process of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) – used to veto foreign investment into the US when necessary.  While many FIRRMA provisions will require implementing regulations to become effective, and those regulations might not be finalized for many months, investors and businesses will need to prepare for FIRRMA now, and the firm provides some questions that they should ask themselves now about the potential implications and effect of the new legislation.

https://www.wsgr.com/WSGR/Display.aspx?SectionName=publications/PDFSearch/client-advisory-FIRRMA-0718.htm

IRELAND: CHILD SEX DOLLS ARE SEIZED BY GARDAÍ IN RAIDS

On 27th July, the Irish Independent reported that a number of child sex dolls have been seized as part of a major Garda operation targeting paedophiles – the first time that child sex dolls have been seized in raids.  31 homes around the country were raided in a crackdown called Operation Ketch on people who are suspected of possessing, importing and distributing child pornography, resulting in the confiscation of computers, phones and other equipment.  Gardaí said 20% of the intelligence received by officers was from social media sites.

https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/child-sex-dolls-are-seized-by-garda-in-raids-across-state-37159581.html

FORMER CHAIRMAN OF CHINESE STATE-OWNED SINOPEC OIL COMPANY GETS TO 16 YEARS FOR GRAFT

On 27th July, Baker McKenzie reported that Su Shulin has been sentenced to 16 years in prison for graft, The People’s Daily reported.  Su was Fujian governor and also served as the province’s Communist Party deputy chief.  He was chairman of China Petroleum and Chemical Corporation (aka Sinopec) before his 2011 appointment in Fujian, one of China’s wealthiest provinces on the coast across from Taiwan.

http://www.riskandcompliancehub.com/china-former-sinopec-chairman-sentenced-to-16-years-in-prison-for-graft/

AEO: PACIFIC ALLIANCE MEMBERS SIGN FIRST MULTILATERAL MUTUAL RECOGNITION ARRANGEMENT

On 27th July, the WCO published a news release saying that trade bloc formed by Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru have signed a Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) of their respective Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) programmes.  The MRA is the first of its kind, ensuring movement of goods by strengthening the security of the international supply chain, and improving trade facilitation within the region. Such an approach to MRA reduces/eliminates the need for a number of bilateral MRA.

http://www.wcoomd.org/en/media/newsroom/2018/july/pacific-alliance-members-sign-first-plurilateral-mutual-recognition-arrangement.aspx

FALLING COCAINE PRICES TRIGGER SURGE IN HARD DRUG CONSUMPTION AMONG YOUNG BRITONS

Illicit Trade on 27th July reported that figures from the Crime Survey of England and Wales released by the Home Office has revealed that 8.4% of 16 to 24-year-olds used drugs such as heroin, cocaine and ecstasy at some point over the past 12 months, an increase from 7% in 2016/17.  Cocaine maintained its position as the most popular stimulant drug across the UK last year, after it was used by estimated 875,000 people, a 15% year-on-year rise and the highest level of usage recorded for a decade.  The price has plummeted across the UK in recent years, thanks in part to bumper coca production in South America, and domestic dealers facing increased competition thanks to illicit dark web marketplaces.

https://www.illicit-trade.com/2018/07/falling-cocaine-prices-trigger-surge-in-hard-drug-consumption-among-young-britons-survey-finds/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

The Survey is available at –

http://www.crimesurvey.co.uk/SurveyResults.html

Author: raytodd2017

Chartered Legal Executive and former senior manager with Isle of Man Customs and Excise, where I was (amongst other things) Sanctions Officer (for UN/EU sanctions), Export Licensing Officer and Manager of the Legal-Library & Collectorate Support Section

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