OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – AUGUST 9

9th August 2019

ITAR AND EAR REQUIREMENTS UNDER US SMALL BUSINESS INNOVATION RESEARCH (SBIR) CONTRACTS

An article from Williams Mullen on 8th August contains a warning for companies involved in Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) about potential export control implications.    SBIR is a US Government programme intended to help certain small businesses conduct research and development, in the form of contracts or grants for projects that have the potential for commercialisation and meet specific US government R&D needs.  STTR is another programme that provides funding opportunities in R&D.  The article reminds such companies that as they begin the process of commercialising their products developed under the programs, it is critically important to identify the export jurisdiction and classification of the products.

https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/itar-and-ear-requirements-under-small-31623/

WHAT AI COMPANIES MUST KNOW TO COMPLY WITH NEW US EXPORT POLICIES

Law.com on 8th August published an article saying that companies looking to get ahead of the potential deemed export control implications, or seeking investment from foreign investors, should determine the ECCN of their AI, software, and other technology items.  It considers the expanded authority of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) to review, block or unwind certain transactions involving foreign investment without “control” of key US assets, businesses or technologies.

https://www.law.com/legaltechnews/2019/08/08/what-artificial-intelligence-companies-must-know-to-comply-with-new-export-policies/

CAYMAN ISLANDS REGISTER OF LAW FIRMS AND SOLE PRACTITIONERS

On 7th August, the Cayman News Service reported that all law firms and sole practitioners operating in Cayman must register with a new legal regulator before the end of August.  The newly-formed Cayman Attorneys Regulatory Authority (CARA) has begun to build its regulatory oversight framework, including the register, to help fight money laundering.  The Cayman Islands Legal Practitioners Association (CILPA) is recognised as the self-regulatory body for the supervision of lawyers and has 546 members, about 80% of the lawyers working in the jurisdiction. This is said to be one of many changes being introduced to meet CFATF (FATF) requirements.

https://caymannewsservice.com/2019/08/law-firm-register-established/

MARYAM NAWAZ, PAKISTAN’S FORMER PRIME MINISTER NAWAZ SHARIF’S DAUGHTER, ARRESTED IN A MONEY LAUNDERING CASE

The Indian Awaaz and others reported on 9th August that Maryam Nawaz, , was arrested while she was on her way back from visiting her father, who is in prison.  It is reported that her cousin, Yousuf Abbas, has also been arrested.

https://theindianawaaz.com/maryam-nawaz-arrested-in-a-money-laundering-case/

BRAZIL EX-BILLIONAIRE RE-ARRESTED IN CORRUPTION PROBE

RTL Today on 9th August reported that Brazilian ex-billionaire Eike Batista, once the richest man in Brazil, and who has been under house arrest pending an appeal of a 30-year jail sentence, has been arrested again as part of a corruption probe.  He is reported to have been arrested together with an associate, Luiz Arthur Correia, and 4 others and suspected of insider trading and money laundering.

https://today.rtl.lu/news/business-and-tech/a/1387368.html

HONG KONG: NEW GUIDANCE FOR BANKS ON AML/CFT

On 6th August, King & Wood Mallesons published an article saying that the Hong Kong Association of Banks had published 28 new frequently asked questions tackling some of the thornier issues in relation to AML/CFT, with input from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority.  The article summarises the key aspects of the FAQ and other major AML/CFT developments, provides 6 action steps, and says that the FAQ form an integral part of the banking industry’s “rule book” for AML/CFT.

https://www.kwm.com/en/hk/knowledge/insights/new-guidance-for-banks-on-aml-and-cft-20190806

DANSKE’S BID TO BLOCK US CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT ALLEGING MONEY LAUNDERING CLAIMS AFFECTED SHARE PRICE

On 9th August, KYC 360 reported that a US class action lawsuit against the Danish bank at the centre of Europe’s biggest money laundering scandal is set to continue after a court denied a request to dismiss the case.

https://www.riskscreen.com/kyc360/news/danskes-bid-to-block-u-s-class-action-lawsuit-hits-obstacle/

CURACAO: HOW GAMBLING INTERESTS BOUGHT A COUNTRY

Interesting, and worrying, BBC Radio 4 documentary which, amongst other things, says that the licensing system for online gambling operators (and a extensive, but non-legal “sub-licences”) is of doubtful legality, and could have been designed to encourage political corruption.  It starts with one licensed company apparently trying to get an underage child making a You Tube promotion, and reveals that one of the jurisdiction’s politicians was assassinated after threatening to reveal gambling industry practices, and the first prime minister has been jailed for political corruption after laundering money from a major gambling operator alleged by the police in Italy to have mafia connections.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0007bwl

EU’S IRAN TRADE CHIEF FORCED TO QUIT

EU Observer reported on 9th August that Bernd Erbel, a German diplomat who was to run the EU’s Instex Iran trade entity, has resigned in an anti-Semitism row, after it was found that he had twice appeared on radio with a Holocaust-denier.

https://euobserver.com/tickers/145622

FALSIFIED MEDICINES AND THE SUPPLY CHAIN

On 8th August, the UK MHRA Inspectorate published a post on the Gov.uk blog.  Which sets out to share experience gained from recent events to assist in to comply with the Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD) requirements.

https://mhrainspectorate.blog.gov.uk/2019/08/08/falsified-medicines-and-the-supply-chain/

WCO PUBLISHES AN E-COMMERCE PACKAGE

On 8th August, a news release from the WCO reported the release of the Package which provides guidance to Customs administrations on establishing or enhancing the legislative, policy and operational framework for managing cross-border e-commerce.

http://www.wcoomd.org/en/media/newsroom/2019/august/wco-publishes-an-e-commerce-package.aspx

ANOTHER TURKISH DRILL SHIP HEADING FOR CONTESTED AREA OFF CYPRUS

On 9th August, Insurance Marine News reported that another drilling ship is to join the 2 Turkish drill ships that continue to operate in a disputed area in the Eastern Mediterranean amid increasing tensions between Turkey and Cyprus.

https://insurancemarinenews.com/insurance-marine-news/another-turkish-drill-ship-heading-for-contested-area-off-cyprus/

FBI WARNS OF BANKING TROJAN THAT ELUDES ANTIVIRUS AS FILELESS MALWARE ATTACKS RISE

Homeland Security Today on 7th August reported that the FBI has released information to help federal, state, local, and private sector organisations protect themselves against the Osiris Banking Trojan and fileless malware attacks.  It says that the Osiris Banking Trojan, an upgraded version of the Kronos Banking Trojan, uses 2 fileless techniques, making it more difficult to detect using standard antivirus software.  Its added features and enhanced functionality allow cyber criminals to gain remote access to financial customer profiles and cause the malware to be more effective in stealing funds.  Fileless malware operates partly or entirely from the computer’s memory without placing malicious executables on the underlying file system.

https://www.hstoday.us/subject-matter-areas/cybersecurity/fbi-warns-of-banking-trojan-as-fileless-malware-attacks-on-the-rise/

PROLIFIC CHINESE CYBER THREAT GROUP ENGAGED IN CRIME AND ESPIONAGE

On 7th August, Homeland Security Today carried an article about a comprehensive report detailing APT41, a prolific Chinese cyber threat group that carries out state-sponsored espionage activity in parallel with financially motivated operations – saying that evidence suggests APT41 has conducted simultaneous cyber crime and cyber espionage operations from 2014 onward.  Organisations targeted include those in the healthcare, high-tech, and telecommunications sectors; and targeting of higher education, travel services, and news/media companies provide some indication that the group also tracks individuals and conducts surveillance.

https://www.hstoday.us/subject-matter-areas/cybersecurity/report-prolific-chinese-cyber-threat-group-engaged-in-crime-espionage/

see the report at –

https://www.fireeye.com/blog/threat-research/2019/08/apt41-dual-espionage-and-cyber-crime-operation.html

https://content.fireeye.com/apt-41/rpt-apt41/

PODCAST: ONE BANK’S NICHE SERVING COLORADO CANNABIS CUSTOMERS

On 7th August, the ABA banking Journal published a podcast saying that, with 7 in 10 Americans living in a jurisdiction where local laws permit recreational or medicinal marijuana use, banks are increasingly focused on providing banking services to cannabis-related businesses.  The the podcast, Mark Haden talks about how Colorado National Bank developed a programme to provide deposit services to cannabis-related customers in its home market of Denver.  It includes discussion of the bank’s evaluation of the 2014 FinCEN guidance on serving marijuana-related businesses and its consultation with regulators, the bank’s enhanced monitoring system to track marijuana-related cash, and the importance of defining the kind of marijuana-related entities a bank might consider serving.

https://bankingjournal.aba.com/2019/08/podcast-one-banks-niche-serving-colorado-cannabis-customers/

UK: EXPORT DRUGS AND MEDICINES – SPECIAL RULES WHERE EXPORT PERMISSION REQUIRED

On 9th August, the Home Office published updated guidance on when you must get permission to export certain drugs and medicines.  You need Home Office permission to export controlled drugs (e.g. opioids, certain stimulants or psychotropic substances), certain drugs that can be used in lethal injections outside the EU, and medicines for humans or animals.  There’s a different process if you travel with controlled drugs for personal use. For example, taking medicine with you on holiday.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/export-drugs-and-medicines-special-rules

LEBANESE BUSINESSMAN SENTENCED IN US OVER HEZBOLLAH SUPPORT

The News Tribune carried an AP story on 9th August saying that Kassim Tajideen, a Lebanese businessman accused of providing millions of dollars to the Hezbollah militant group has been sentenced to 5 years in prison for his role in a money laundering conspiracy aimed at evading US sanctions.  He was arrested in Morocco and extradited to the US in March 2017.

https://www.thenewstribune.com/news/nation-world/article233727482.html

MACAU BILLIONAIRE NG LAP-SENG LOSES US APPEAL AGAINST UN-RELATED BRIBERY CONVICTION

In its 10th August edition, the South China Morning Post reported that the businessman was sentenced to 4 years in jail for bribing 2 UN ambassadors to help him build a multibillion-dollar conference centre in Macau.  Prosecutors accused Ng of paying more than $1 million in bribes to John Ashe, a former UN General Assembly president and ambassador from Antigua and Barbuda, and Francis Lorenzo, a former deputy ambassador from the Dominican Republic.  Ng apparently wanted to turn Macau into the “Geneva of Asia”.

https://www.scmp.com/print/news/china/article/3022243/macau-billionaire-ng-lap-seng-loses-us-appeal-against-un-related-bribery

DOZENS OF ARRESTS IN THE UK AS PART OF EUROPE-WIDE ANTI-SLAVERY OPERATION

A news release from the NCA reported on 9th August that 44 people have been arrested and 35 potential victims have been identified in the UK as part of a Europe-wide operation targeting modern slavery and human trafficking in June.  It says that 203 visits were made to business and residential premises, carrying out welfare and safeguarding checks and raising awareness.

https://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/news/dozens-of-arrests-in-the-uk-as-part-of-europe-wide-anti-slavery-operation

https://www.europol.europa.eu/newsroom/news/70-arrests-in-pan-european-action-against-child-trafficking

CHINESE CUSTOMS INTERCEPTS 36 TONNES OF USED CONVEYOR BELTS FROM AUSTRALIA

On 9th August, Xinhua reported that Customs officers in the coastal city of Dalian in northeast China’s Liaoning Province intercepted nearly 35.74 tonnes of waste in a cargo of old conveyor belts from Australia.

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2019-08/09/c_138296435.htm

COCAINE WORTH $2 MILLION FOUND ON NEW ZEALAND BEACH

The Latin American Herald Tribune reported that New Zealand police have found 19 bundles of cocaine that had apparently washed ashore in the coastal community of Bethells Beach, West Auckland.

http://www.laht.com/article.asp?ArticleId=2481954&CategoryId=12395

TAIWAN SEIZED $117 MILLION IN FIRST HALF OF 2019

On 9th August, Baker McKenzie reported that the National Police Agency (NPA) presented data showing that it had investigated 534 cases of suspected money-laundering over the period, about 100 of which involved channelling illegal proceeds from Taiwan to China.  The confiscated money was 8 times the amount seized during same period last year.

http://www.riskandcompliancehub.com/taiwan-officials-trumpet-successes-fighting-money-laundering/

POTENT MARIJUANA BIG BUSINESS FOR COLOMBIA TRAFFICKERS

On 9th August, Insight Crime carried a report saying that, while Colombia is known for its vast coca fields, the hillsides of its Cauca region are covered in another illicit crop: highly potent marijuana – known as “cripy” or “creepy”.  It is said to have high levels of the psychoactive drug THC – between 15% and 25%, much higher than standard cannabis.  It says that “creepy” marijuana from Colombia has made it as far south as Chile, passing through both Ecuador and Peru, according to the US State Department, and is sent to Brazil via Venezuela and to the Caribbean.

06-08-19_High-octane-Marijuana_InSight-Crime_info-2

https://www.insightcrime.org/news/analysis/a-green-gold-rush-potent-marijuana-big-business-for-colombia-traffickers/

CANNABIS-BASED VAPING AND SMOKING PRODUCTS: SETTING A BUDDING INDUSTRY ABLAZE

A briefing from Clifford Chance on 9th August says that, following recent changes in the law concerning the legal status of cannabis, innovative businesses are exploring new ways to disrupt a number of markets with the introduction of cannabis-based products as an alternative for consumers.  However, it also says that, with so many new and innovative products available, companies operating within the market will need to ensure that their activities and the products they market, comply with the relevant laws and regulations in order to avoid criminal and civil sanctions as well as long-lasting damage to their brand and reputation.

https://onlineservices.cliffordchance.com/online/freeDownload.action?key=OBWIbFgNhLNomwBl%2B33QzdFhRQAhp8D%2BxrIGReI2crGqLnALtlyZe%2Bx1OKfKAufj9l32Yl7AlBTp%0D%0A5mt12P8Wnx03DzsaBGwsIB3EVF8XihbSpJa3xHNE7tFeHpEbaeIf&attachmentsize=275432

PROGRESS OF ORGANIZATION OF AMERICAN STATES (OAS) MEMBER STATES TO ADDRESS DRUG PROBLEM AND RELATED CRIMES

On 9th August, FATF-style regional body CFATF (the Caribbean FATF), on behalf of the Organization of American States (OAS), has published the Multilateral Evaluation Mechanism (MEM) 7th Round National Evaluation Reports on Drug Policies 2019 of the OAS Member States.  The MEM is an instrument designed to measure the progress of actions taken by the member states of the OAS to address the hemispheric drug problem and other related crimes. The MEM process highlights strengths and weaknesses in its country reports and encourages national dialogue among policymakers.  Included is information on:

  • the legislative frameworks of the Caribbean countries to counter money laundering derived from drug trafficking;
  • the strengthening of agencies’ capacities for the administration and disposition of seized and forfeited assets in cases of drug trafficking, money laundering and related crimes, and
  • the exchange of intelligence information to detect routes and methods used by criminal drug trafficking organisations.

https://www.cfatf-gafic.org/home/cfatf-news/572-multilateral-evaluation-mechanism-mem-7th-round-national-evaluation-reports-on-drug-policies-2019

The individual reports are available at –

http://www.cicad.oas.org/Main/Template.asp?File=/mem/reports/7/ronda_7_eval_eng.asp

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This blog is primarily for my own use, to keep informed and up to date. However, if you would like to say thank you (and perhaps help me get a new, better laptop when I am away…) you can “buy me a coffee” at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

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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