The BBC on 25th March reported that a man who carried out a £180,000 VAT tax fraud will face restrictions on his future financial dealings when he leaves prison. HMRC confirmed it has obtained a 3-year SCPO against John Farrell – the first time such an order, which is designed to protect the public, has been granted to HMRC. The conditions of the order mean he will have to notify HMRC of business interests and face restrictions on bank or building society accounts he owns. He will also face limits on the amount of cash he can possess and will have to notify HMRC of his income, plus his general finances, assets and investments. He will have to notify HMRC of all intended travel outside the UK at least 14 days in advance of his departure date and will not be allowed to use any aliases on any identity documentation. The SCPO also forbids communication with 4 named individuals.
The Law Society Gazette on 25th March carried a story saying that the FCA has received more than 5,000 tip-offs alleging suspected insider trading but has opened just a tiny fraction of that number for investigations, according to law firm Greenberg Traurig. According to a FoI request filed by the firm, the FCA received 5,107 tip-offs in 2018 but opened only 61 investigations. The tip-offs alleged suspected insider dealing and were made under the Suspicious Transaction and Order Report regime (STOR). Since April 2014, the FCA has commenced 9 prosecutions for insider dealing, resulting in 6 convictions.
On 25th March, the US Treasury issued an updated Advisory to the Maritime Petroleum Shipping Community to highlight risks associated with shipments to Syria and updates its November 20th Advisory to include additional guidelines and risks associated with facilitating the shipment of petroleum destined for Syrian Government-owned and -operated ports, to include petroleum of Iranian origin. I t adds dozens of new vessels involved in illicit oil shipments, including 16 shipping to Syria and more than 30 engaging in ship-to-ship transfers, and highlights concerns with shipments of petroleum from Iran. Many of the names of the vessels have also been updated to reflect name changes.
The Advisory is at –
The Globe & Mail on 25th March carried an article which, it says, explains untold international details behind recent RCMP investigations, missed early warnings, and lessons from Australian police, that could jump-start Canada’s late response to these growing risks, sources say.
On 25th March, Baker McKenzie reported that Ryan Andrew Gustafson (aka Jack Farrel, and Willy Clock), 31 a US citizen who resided in Uganda pleaded guilty in federal court to charges of conspiracy to manufacture/pass/transfer/sell counterfeit currency, conspiracy to launder money, and committing counterfeiting acts outside the US. The court was advised that Ryan Gustafson was leading an international counterfeit US currency operation headquartered in Uganda, which flooded the US and Uganda with more than $2 million in counterfeit Federal Reserve Notes.
On 25th March, a news release from HM Treasury advised that the TARIQ GIDAR GROUP (TGG) had been added to the list of entities subject to sanctions because of links to Al-Qaida/ISIL. This followed the decision of the relevant UN sanctions committee on 22nd March.
These Regulations bring into force the provisions of certain sanctions regulations which have been made under section 1 of the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018. The provisions required for a person to be designated for the purposes of the sanctions regulations (whether by the Secretary of State in the UK or the UN Security Council and its Sanctions Committees) come into force on dates in March 2019 (with an exception for designations made under the Chemical Weapons (Sanctions) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019). All provisions of the sanctions regulations commenced by these Regulations other than those relating to designation will come into force on exit day (whenever that might be).
On 24th March, law chambers 6KBW published a report on the Court of Appeal case of R v Morrison. The the Court considered the principles governing section 6(5) of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, which require the court to make a confiscation order if it would not be disproportionate to require the defendant to pay the recoverable amount. The Court said that the existence of the exception did not mean that a general discretion was vested in the court. The court of first instance had held that it would be disproportionate to make any order in relation to a “tainted gift” – that the recipient had no interest in the property involved and it would not be possible for the Crown to recover it or any part of its value from the defendant. The prosecutor appealed, and the Court of Appeal agreed that the court had erred in concluding that it would be disproportionate to include the tainted gift in the confiscation order. The Court of Appeal said that the recorder had made the fundamental error of basing his decision upon the possibility of hardship or injustice to a third party. The report does point out that an enforcement receiver could have been appointed, but that had not been pointed out to the judge involved, and it was unfortunate that the prosecutor had left him with the impression that an enforcement receiver could not be appointed.
On 24th March, the Times of Malta reported that, a year after the FIAU flagged a “reasonable suspicion of money laundering” by Opposition leader Adrian Delia, the police investigation has hit a brick wall; and that a report by the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit drafted in March 2018, concluded that sufficient information was available to conclude that Dr Delia and his bank account in Jersey “may have been used for money laundering”. The article provides details. Senior police sources explained that although the intelligence report handed to them this time last year had recommended a criminal probe, this had been left on the back burner for several months as the case was deemed too difficult to crack and not as pressing as other matters. The allegations against Dr Delia date back to the period between 2001 and 2004 and had first been reported by the late Daphne Caruana Galizia, about 2 months before she was killed in a car bomb explosion.