OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – MAY 11

Panama Covid-19 update – a bad set of statistics today – with 3,324 new cases leading to a 2,540 increase in active cases to 18,644 and 5 new fatalities. This was the highest number of fatalities since 1 March. There are 21 in ICU and 149 in other wards, with 41 in hospital-hotels.

11 MAY 2022

PARAGUAYAN ANTI-DRUG PROSECUTOR MURDERED IN COLOMBIA

On 10 May, La Prensa Panama reported that Marcelo Pecci, a prosecutor who specialised in the fight against drugs, was killed on the Caribbean island of Barú, near the city of Cartagena.  He had been married on 30 April in Cartagena.

https://www.prensa.com/mundo/asesinan-en-colombia-a-fiscal-paraguayo-antidrogas-marcelo-pecci/

OUTSOURCING CAYMAN ISLANDS AML/CFT COMPLIANCE OBLIGATIONS

On 10 May, an article from Mourant provided a guide as a practical overview of the relevant steps and considerations which should be borne in mind when an financial service provider (FSP) plans to outsource, or is reviewing existing outsourcing arrangements relating to the performance of an AML/CFT compliance function to a service provider.

https://www.mourant.com/news-and-views/guides/guides-2022/outsourcing-cayman-islands-aml-cft-compliance-obligations.aspx

PAYMENT SERVICES AND CROWDFUNDING SERVICES ARE NOW REGULATED UNDER CANADA’S AML FRAMEWORK

On 9 May, an article from Gowling WLG was concerned with changes affecting the Canada’s AML legislation from 5 April.  The changes, which were initially an emergency response to the protest convoys occupying major Canadian urban areas, are now permanently in force. 

https://gowlingwlg.com/en/insights-resources/articles/2022/canada-anti-money-laundering-framework-regulation/

SWITZERLAND ADDS 2 NAMES TO ITS RUSSIAN SANCTIONS LISTS

On 3 May, Swiss authorities added Ukrainian businessman Serhiy Vitaliyovich Kurchenko and Russian businessman Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin to its Russian sanctions.  Both are already designated under various US, EU and UK sanctions regimes.

https://www.seco.admin.ch/seco/de/home/Aussenwirtschaftspolitik_Wirtschaftliche_Zusammenarbeit/Wirtschaftsbeziehungen/exportkontrollen-und-sanktionen/sanktionen-embargos/sanktionsmassnahmen/massnahmen-zur-vermeidung-der-umgehung-internationaler-sanktione.html

MACAO BETS ON A NEW FUTURE AS CHINA CRACKS DOWN ON GAMBLING

On 11 May, Nikkei Asia reported that pressure from Beijing and pandemic travel rules are forcing the gamer’s paradise to diversify.  It says that the coronavirus restrictions for the past 2 years have all but stopped visitors from coming into the city, leaving the strip – and the rest of Macao – eerily quiet. 

https://asia.nikkei.com/Spotlight/The-Big-Story/Macao-bets-on-a-new-future-as-China-cracks-down-on-gambling

FLIGHT OF SHOPS FROM LUXURY MALL IN MOSCOW SHOWS RUSSIAN ISOLATION AFTER UKRAINE INVASION

On 10 May, an article in the Wall Street Journal reported that the GUM shopping mall in Moscow, one of the most conspicuous symbols of Russian wealth is feeling the cost of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.  For years, Russia’s most famous mall showed how Moscow could rival Western capitals in luxury services, but the shift in its fortunes embodies Russia’s growing isolation from the global economy.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/flight-of-shops-from-luxury-mall-in-moscow-shows-russian-isolation-after-ukraine-invasion-11652192150

GUATEMALAN ARRESTED IN PANAMA FOR WAR CRIMES

On 11 May, Infobae reported that former Guatemalan military officer Toribio Acevedo Ramirez has been detained at Panama’s Tocumen airport after a judge ordered prosecutors to search for and prosecute him for his ties to one of Guatemala’s most emblematic war crimes cases.

https://www.infobae.com/america/agencias/2022/05/11/detienen-en-panama-a-un-guatemalteco-por-crimenes-de-guerra/

DRUG SMUGGLERS STRAPPING CONTRABAND TO SHIPS’ HULLS IN BID TO OUTSMART AUSTRALIAN PORT OFFICIALS

On 11 May, Radio New Zealand reported that crime syndicates are attempting to smuggle drugs into Australia strapped to the hulls of cargo ships to evade detection.

https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/top/466879/drug-smugglers-strapping-contraband-to-ships-hulls-in-bid-to-outsmart-australian-port-officials

NEW ZEALAND: POSSIBLE AML BREACHES AT ANZ NZ BANK REFERRED TO THE RESERVE BANK’S ENFORCEMENT

On 11 May, Interest in New Zealand reported that ANZ New Zealand, the country’s biggest bank, may have materially breached the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act.  ANZ says it “self-identified” 3 prescribed transaction reporting (PTR) matters to the Reserve Bank (RBNZ), its AML/CFT Act supervisor.

https://www.interest.co.nz/banking/115735/possible-anz-nz-anti-money-laundering-breaches-referred-reserve-bank%E2%80%99s-enforcement

JUST UNDER £2 MILLION IN RUSSIAN ASSETS IN THE ISLE OF MAN HAVE BEEN FROZEN

On 11 May, Manx Radio reported the announcement that assets of just under £2 million had been frozen in the Island.

https://www.manxradio.com/news/isle-of-man-news/minister-reveals-amount-of-frozen-russian-assets/

UK: NEW FINANCIAL SERVICES AND MARKETS BILL TO HELP VICTIMS OF FINANCIAL SCAMS

On 11 May, NS Banking reported that a new Bill will enable the Payment Systems Regulator to require the banks to reimburse the people who are victims of authorised push payment (APP) scams.

https://www.nsbanking.com/news/uks-new-financial-services-and-markets-bill/

SNC-LAVALIN AGREES TO PAY $30 MILLION OVER CANADIAN BRIDGE FRAUD CHARGES

On 11 May, Global Construction Review reported that Canadian construction company SNC-Lavalin has reached an agreement with Quebec provincial prosecutors to pay just under C$30 million to settle fraud charges made in September 2021 concerning the refurbishment of the Jacques Cartier Bridge in Montreal between 1997 and 2004.

https://www.globalconstructionreview.com/snc-lavalin-agrees-to-pay-30m-over-canadian-bridge-fraud-charges/

GERMANY: COURT DECLARES WIRECARD’S ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENTS NULL AND VOID

On 11 May, Hogan Lovells reported that Wirecard’s insolvency administrator has won a first victory before the Munich I Regional Court.  It is said that dividends of around €47 million were distributed to Wirecard’s shareholders from these profits, which probably never existed.  The firm says that the decision has paved the way not only for a reimbursement claim but also for a clawback action, the insolvency administrator now actually has an effective tool in hand to take legal proceedings against the shareholders. It remains to be seen to what extent he will take such action in each individual case, if only for economic reasons.

https://www.engage.hoganlovells.com/knowledgeservices/viewContent.action?key=Ec8teaJ9Var5ClLPX6l78MxgHJMKLFEppVpbbVX%2B3OXcP3PYxlq7sZUjdbSm5FIetvAtgf1eVU8%3D&nav=FRbANEucS95NMLRN47z%2BeeOgEFCt8EGQ0qFfoEM4UR4%3D&emailtofriendview=true&freeviewlink=true

US: CONGRESS AND THE EXECUTIVE CONSIDERING THE NOTION OF A NEW REGULATORY REGIME TO LIMIT CERTAIN TYPES OF US OUTBOUND INVESTMENT IN OTHER COUNTRIES

On 11 May, an article from Morgan Lewis said that, while such a regime would certainly constitute a sea change in US national security and economic policy, most commenters have largely overlooked the potential for US regulation of outbound investment to trigger similar regimes abroad, and thereby exponentially increase the effect on industry.

https://www.morganlewis.com/pubs/2022/05/us-national-security-review-for-outbound-investment-domestic-and-global-impact

BANKERS SUPPORT SWITZERLAND’S DECISION TO NOT CHANGE BANKING SECRECY LAW

On 11 May, OCCRP reported that Swiss bankers have defended the decision of a parliamentary commission not to strike down the controversial Article 47 from the country’s banking secrecy law that has been criticized by the UN, journalists and human rights advocates as violating press freedom.  The article prescribes a prison sentence of up to 3 years and a fine for whoever discloses confidential banking information about a Swiss bank’s client.

https://www.occrp.org/en/daily/16309-bankers-support-switzerland-s-decision-not-change-banking-secrecy-law

IRISH REVENUE COMMISSIONERS PUBLISHES 2021 ANNUAL REPORT

On 11 May, the Revenue Commissioners published their 2021 Annual Report.  It comes against the backdrop of a fundamentally changed trading environment between Ireland and Great Britain post-Brexit, and the continued significant economic and social disruptions associated with the Covid-19 pandemic.  There are also a set of associated reports including research reports on Corporation Tax, Income Tax, VAT and VRT; summaries of the 2021 National Random Sampling Programme for marked mineral oil products and the results of the Tobacco Products Research Survey 2021. It notes that, 1 May 2022, a new Compliance Intervention Framework, supported by a revised Code of Practice for Revenue Compliance Interventions, came into effect.  It reports that drug seizures totalled almost €115 in value and tobacco seizures over €67 million.

https://www.revenue.ie/en/corporate/press-office/press-releases/2022/pr-051122-revenue-publishes-2021-annual-report.aspx

THE LARGEST FCPA ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS INVOLVING HEALTHCARE RELATED COMPANIES

On 10 May, the FCPA Professor website says that healthcare-related companies have resolved numerous FCPA enforcement actions.  The post highlights the 20 largest FCPA enforcement actions (as measured by settlement amount) involving healthcare related companies (broadly speaking pharmaceutical, medical device, life sciences, and diagnostic companies as well as those selling health related products).

https://fcpaprofessor.com/largest-fcpa-enforcement-actions-involving-healthcare-related-companies-2/

BERMUDA: BERMUDA MONETARY CIVIL PENALTIES TOTALLING $1,118,500 ON CONYERS TRUST COMPANY (BERMUDA) LIMITED (COMPANY)

A news release from the BMA advised that the penalties have been levied on the company for historic failures to adequately comply with the Trusts Act and the Proceeds of Crime (Anti-Money Laundering & Anti-Terrorist Financing) Regulations 2008.

https://www.bma.bm/news-and-press-releases/bermuda-monetary-authority-levies-civil-penalties-on-conyers-trust-company-bermuda-limited

NIGERIAN BILLIONAIRE BUILDING US CONSULATE IN NIGERIA IS AN EX-CONVICT

On 10 May, The Cable in Nigeria reported that Gilbert Chagoury co-founded the Chagoury Group in Lagos in 1971.  The conglomerate owns construction, real estate, hotel, glass and flour milling businesses.  It reports that, in 2000, he was reportedly convicted by a Swiss court for laundering some of the funds Abacha looted from the Nigeria.  He reportedly agreed to pay a fine of about $600,000 and handed back $66 million to the Nigerian government.  He denied knowing the funds were stolen.

https://www.thecable.ng/report-nigerian-billionaire-building-us-biggest-consulate-in-nigeria-is-an-ex-convict

‘CRAZY RICH’ INDONESIANS’ ARRESTS SPOTLIGHT INVESTMENT PERILS

On 10 May, Al Jazeera carried an article saying that a case against designer watch-toting influencers highlights opaque world of online trading apps in Indonesia.  A reality TV show had the influencers attributing their extravagant wealth to successful trading on Binomo and Quotex, respectively, binary option trading apps that allow users to bet on a stock’s rise or fall within a strict time limit to be in with a chance to win a fixed monetary amount.  2 of the influencers now face charges of fraud, online gambling, money laundering and violating Indonesia’s Electronic Information and Transactions Law (ITE) by spreading so-called fake news.

https://www.aljazeera.com/economy/2022/5/10/crazy-rich-indonesians-arrests-spotlight-investment-perils

US-PROPOSED MISSILE TECHNOLOGY CONTROL REGIME (MTCR) CHANGES

On 10 May, a briefing from the US Congressional Research Service says that the US has submitted a series of proposals to the MTCR partners that would relax the regime’s export guidelines for certain Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS).

https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/IF/IF11069

GREEK-OWNED TANKERS TAKE ADVANTAGE OF RUSSIAN OIL SANCTIONS

A Lloyds List podcast claimed that a large number of tankers beneficially owned by Greek shipowners were involved in, legally, moving Russian oil product, after sanctions measures prevented (or deterred) others from doing do.

https://lloydslist.maritimeintelligence.informa.com/LL1140719/The-Lloyds-List-Podcast-Why-shipping-is-facing-a-compliance-crisis

PODCAST: “THINGS ARE WORSE THAN WE KNOW”

The latest TRACE podcast is a recording of a talk given by Drew Sullivan of the OCCRP at the University of Maryland.  Drew is the co-founder and editor of the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (the OCCRP), a global network of journalists working collaboratively to evaluate and mine enormous amounts of data to expose corruption.  The OCCRP is also a past winner of the TRACE Prize for Investigative Reporting.

https://www.traceinternational.org/resources-podcast

US: 4-YEAR REVIEW OF SECTION 301 TARIFFS ON PRODUCTS OF CHINA

On 10 May, a Trade Alert from Wilmer Hale reported that the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) has announced a statutorily-mandated “four-year review” of the Section 301 tariffs that USTR has imposed on a wide range of China-origin products pursuant to Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974.  It will consider acts, policies and practices are unreasonable and discriminatory and burden or restrict US commerce, and thus are actionable under Section 301.

https://www.wilmerhale.com/en/insights/client-alerts/20220510-ustr-initiates-four-year-review-of-section-301-tariffs-on-products-of-china

UK COMPANIES HOUSE REFORM ON THE HORIZON

On 11 May, an Insight from Field Fisher followed the Queen’s Speech which included the welcomed announcement that there will be a further Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill.  The purpose of the Bill is described as being to crack down on criminals abusing the open economy, ensuring that it drives out dirty money from the UK and strengthening the UK’s reputation as a place where legitimate businesses can grow and create jobs.  It considers the contents of the new Bill and the likely progress of the measures involved.

https://www.fieldfisher.com/en/insights/companies-house-reform-on-the-horizon

A GUIDE TO ANONYMISATION OF PERSONAL DATA

On 11 May, an Insight article from Field Fisher considers the anonymisation of personal data, asking if it is difficult to achieve and what practical steps do organisations need to take? 

https://www.fieldfisher.com/en/insights/and-it-feels-like-ooh-but-you-don-t-know-my-name

AUSTRALIA: ADDITIONAL SANCTIONS IN RESPONSE TO RUSSIA’S INVASION

On 4 May, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs issued a news release advising that the Australian Government has imposed targeted financial sanctions and travel bans on a further 110 individuals in response to Russia’s illegal war against Ukraine, made up of senior Ukrainian separatists and Russian MPs.  The list includes 34 senior members of the Russian-led movements in Ukrainian regions Donetsk and Luhansk, the so-called “People’s Council of the People’s Republic of Donetsk” and “People’s Council of the People’s Republic of Luhansk”.

https://www.foreignminister.gov.au/minister/marise-payne/media-release/additional-sanctions-response-russias-invasion

https://www.dfat.gov.au/international-relations/security/sanctions/consolidated-list

https://www.dfat.gov.au/international-relations/security/sanctions/sanctions-regimes/russia-sanctions-regime

UK: FCA REMINDS CONSUMERS OF THE RISKS OF INVESTING IN CRYPTOASSETS

On 11 May, a release on Mondo Visione advised that the FCA has said it has seen some recent social media posts regarding cryptoassets and non-fungible tokens (NFT).  The FCA has not been given regulatory oversight over direct investments in cryptoassets and NFT, and there are no consumer protections for those who buy them. As a result, if you buy cryptoassets you should be prepared to lose all the money you invest.

https://mondovisione.com/media-and-resources/news/uk-financial-conduct-authority-reminds-consumers-of-the-risks-of-investing-in-cr/

UK: CULTURAL OBJECTS (PROTECTION FROM SEIZURE) ACT 2022

The UK has published this new Act which amends section 134 of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007 (protection of cultural objects on loan: protected objects) to allow for an extension in the maximum period of protection for cultural objects on loan.  Under the 2007 Act, cultural objects on loan from abroad to UK museums and galleries were already protected from seizure or forfeiture for a period of 12 months from the date the object enters the UK.

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2022/24/pdfs/ukpga_20220024_en.pdf

FAQ ON UNDERTAKING SCREENING FOR NEGATIVE NEWS AND OTHER FORMS OF ADVERSE INFORMATION 

On 11 May, the Wolfsberg Group published these FAQ showing how use of such screening can enhance a financial institution’s awareness of potential financial crime risk posed by both existing and prospective customers.  It refers to negative news screening (NNS) as part of a risk-based approach to AML/CFT, using a risk-based approach.

https://www.wolfsberg-principles.com/sites/default/files/wb/Negative%20News%20Screening%20FAQs%20%282022%29.pdf

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OFAC UPDATES 3 RUSSIA SANCTIONS FAQ

On 11 May, OFAC issued revised FAQ concerning prohibitions related to certain accounting, trust and corporate formation, and management consulting services; what is meant by the terms “credit rating services” and “auditing services; and what is meant by the terms “accounting,” “trust and corporate formation services,” and “management consulting” sectors of the Russian Federation economy.

https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/financial-sanctions/recent-actions/20220511_33

https://home.kpmg/us/en/home/insights/2022/05/tnf-united-states-updates-russia-related-faqs.html

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US: LEADING MSB INDUSTRY ASSOCIATIONS UNVEIL AML BEST PRACTICES

A news release from the Electronic Transactions Association (ETA) and other bodies on 11 May advised of the release of a set of best practices for AML/CFT compliance programmes.  It is said that the Best Practices reflect the MSB industry’s commitment to ensuring a safe and compliant environment for providing non-bank financial services amid rapidly evolving threats to the US financial system.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/leading-msb-industry-associations-unveil-anti-money-laundering-best-practices-301544792.html

https://c212.net/c/link/?t=0&l=en&o=3532246-1&h=2438088042&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.electran.org%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2FMSB-Best-Practices-v29-5.6.22-FINAL.pdf&a=Best+Practices+for+U.S.+Money+Services+Businesses%3A+Anti-Money+Laundering+and+Counter-Financing+of+Terrorism+(AML%2FCFT)+Compliance+Programs.

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WHAT IS BLOCKCHAIN AND WHAT ARE THE LEGAL CHALLENGES?

On 9 May, an article from Irish law firm Matheson sets out to explain what it is, its uses and legal challenges.

https://www.matheson.com/insights/detail/what-is-blockchain-and-what-are-the-legal-challenges

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SANCTIONS: EU COMMISSION PUBLISHES CONSOLIDATED LIST OF TRAVEL BANS

On 11 May, the European Commission has published a consolidated list of travel bans.  The tool shows who is subject to a travel ban under sanctions measures, and therefore are prevented from travelling to the EU. 

https://www.sanctionsmap.eu/

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OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – MAY 10

Panama Covid-19 update – today’s numbr of new cases, at 3,307, is the highest figure since 5 February, and the number of tests undertaken, at 15,537, is the highest daily figure since 8 February, and with a 21.5% hit rate.

Nevertheless, hospital numbers actually fell slightly, with 16 patients in ICU and 132 in other wards, although numbers in hospital-hotel quarantine rose slightly to 35, and there are 16,104 active cases records – a whopping rise of a further 2,372. The good news is this was another day with no deaths recorded.

10 MAY 2022

ISLE OF MAN CONFIRMS 88 NEW NAMES ON RUSSIA SANCTIONS LIST

On 10 May, the Isle of Man confirmed that 88 names had been added to the Russia sanctions lists.

https://www.gov.im/news/2022/may/10/financial-sanctions-russia/

UK: EXTRADITION – SUCCESSFUL ARTICLE 3 CHALLENGE ON BASIS OF LGBTQ+ PERSECUTION IN ARMENIA

In its latest Extradition and International Law Update, 5 St Andrews Hill chambers reported on a recent case in which extradition was refused on the basis that if extradited there was a real risk of breach of the man’s rights under Article 3 and Article 6 of the European Convention of Human Rights.  

https://www.5sah.co.uk/knowledge-hub/articles/2022-05-03/armenia-v-ab-successful-article-3-challenge-on-basis-of-lgbtq-persecution

FIRST UK/MEXICO EXTRADITION ORDERED FOR FORMER FIRST LADY OF MEXICO KARIME TUBILLA

In its latest Extradition and International Law Update, 5 St Andrews Hill chambers reported on a recent case involving the first-ever extradition received from Mexico by the UK.  Ms Tubilla’s is wanted by the Mexican authorities on charges of conspiracy to defraud, and was arrested on 29 October 2019.

https://www.5sah.co.uk/knowledge-hub/articles/2022-04-25/first-uk-mexico-extradition-ordered-for-former-first-lady-of-mexico-ms-karime-tubilla

THE QUESTION OF WHETHER A PERSON FACING EXTRADITION IS A “FUGITIVE”

In the latest Extradition and International Law Update from 5 St Andrews Hill chambers, an article addressed the question of whether or not a “Requested Person” (RP) is a fugitive, which is said to be a key consideration at each stage of an extradition case, whether it be in the consideration of bail at the initial hearing, the availability of certain bars to extradition or the consideration of human rights.  The article attempts to provide an overview of the concept of ‘fugitive status’, and the impact it can have at a final hearing.

https://www.5sah.co.uk/knowledge-hub/articles/2022-04-28/hide-and-seek-fugitive-status-in-extradition

BELGIAN GOVERNMENT PROPOSES COMPLETE BAN ON GAMBLING ADVERTISING

On 10 May, iGB reported that such a ban would apply to advertisements for all games of chance currently available legally in Belgium across online and land-based facilities, with the exception of the country’s National Lottery.

https://igamingbusiness.com/belgium-ban-gambling-advertising

SANCTIONS ROW PREVENTS SHIP FROM SAILING NORWEGIAN CRUISE

On 10 May, Travel Weekly reported that the Norwegian foreign affairs ministry rejected an application by the company for an exemption in order to insure the ship for the cruise.  The company had been given a sanctions exemption as it tries to refinance its fleet against the backdrop of the Russian invasion of Ukraine – but it has now emerged that the exemption did not entail a right to insure the ship.

https://travelweekly.co.uk/news/tourism/sanctions-row-prevents-first-havila-voyages-ship-from-sailing

JAPAN ANNOUNCES FRESH ECONOMIC SANCTIONS AGAINST RUSSIA

On 10 May, News 18 reported that Japan has announced new sanctions on Russia to freeze the assets of more individuals and ban exports of cutting-edge goods to some Russian groups including scientific research institutions.

https://www.news18.com/news/world/japan-announces-fresh-economic-sanctions-against-russia-5143435.html

PANDORA PAPERS SHED LIGHT ON ‘GATEKEEPERS’ OF DIRTY MONEY

On 9 May, an article from ICIJ about the recent MONEYVAL annual report, in which it rebuked governments across Europe for failing to combat money laundering or police lawyers, accountants and other professionals who facilitate financial crime.

https://www.icij.org/investigations/pandora-papers/pandora-papers-shed-light-on-gatekeepers-of-dirty-money-says-european-watchdog/

THE VATICAN, MONEY LAUNDERING AND MONEYVAL

On 9 May, The Pillar and Infovaticana published articles about the MONEYVAL evaluation and follow-up of the Vatican, noting that MONEYVAL still flagged concerns about staffing and funding for financial security operations, which it said delays Vatican money laundering investigations.  The Holy See (including the Vatican City State) will be subject to MONEYVAL’s regular follow-up reporting process as a result of the most recent positive report.  The MONEYVAL report noted the risk of internal corruption — and adequate appreciation of the risk.

https://www.pillarcatholic.com/p/eu-financial-watchdog-upgrades-vatican?s=r

https://infovaticana.com/blogs/specola/el-fracaso-del-sinodo-del-papa-francisco-el-rescate-de-la-monja-moneyval-y-el-vaticano-un-cura-se-defiende-la-victoria-de-la-rusos/

US: TRIAL OF FOX EXECUTIVES IN FIFA CASE DELAYED TO JANUARY 2023

On 9 May, Yahoo News reported that the trial of a pair of former 21st Century Fox Inc executives and a sports marketing company on charges related to the US Government investigation of corruption in soccer has been postponed.  They were charged in March 2020 as part of an alleged scheme related to rights to the Copa Libertadores soccer tournament, South America’s club championship.  The Uruguayan sports marketing company Full Play Group SA also was charged.

https://ca.news.yahoo.com/trial-fox-executives-fifa-case-172001627.html

WHAT DO YOU NEED TO KNOW WHEN YOU DECIDE TO APPLY FOR AN INTERPOL RED NOTICE REMOVAL?

On 10 May, a video report from Estlund Law PA in the US.

https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/what-do-you-need-to-know-when-you-decide-58524/

US TREASURY ISSUES UPDATE TO IP-RELATED TRANSACTIONS IN RUSSIA

On 9 May, Haug Partners LLP reported that, on 5 May, OFAC issued a General License which authorises certain intellectual property-related transactions in Russia, including the filing and prosecution of any application to obtain a patent, trademark, or copyright, as well as payment of renewal and maintenance fees.  The article explains what the License covers.

https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/u-s-department-of-the-treasury-issues-2934958/

HONG KONG CUSTOMS ARRESTS TRUCK DRIVER AND SEIZES US$38 MILLION WORTH OF ILLEGAL CIGARETTES IN 2 OPERATIONS

On 10 May, the South China Morning Post reported that the seizures were made as part of the fight against black-market cigarette smugglers attempting to stash their haul in the city while finding overseas buyers – as, due to the coronavirus pandemic, ports around the world had tightened quarantine controls, which had seriously disrupted seaborne logistics supply chains, including shipping routes for contraband items.  One consignment had arrived from Cambodia and the other by road from Mainland China.

https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/law-and-crime/article/3177162/hong-kong-customs-arrest-truck-driver-seize-hk74

SALE OF DONKEY SKINS LINKED TO TRADE IN ILLEGAL WILDLIFE PRODUCTS

On 10 May, the India Education Diary reported that research published in Conservation Science and Practice has revealed links between the global trade in donkey skins and the wildlife trade and suggests that these trades operate in parallel, creating new avenues and transportation pathways for wildlife trade.  The trade of donkey skins is largely driven by demand for E-Jiao, a traditional Chinese medicine, which uses gelatine from donkey skins.

https://indiaeducationdiary.in/university-of-oxford-sale-of-donkey-skins-linked-to-trade-in-illegal-wildlife-products/

SPAIN’S SPY CHIEF SACKED AFTER PEGASUS SPYWARE REVELATIONS

On 10 May, the Guardian reported that the Spanish government has reportedly sacked the country’s spy chief following revelations that the intelligence service hacked the phones of leading members of the Catalan independence movement, and that Pegasus spyware was used in external attacks on the mobiles of the prime minister and the defence minister.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/may/10/spains-spy-chief-paz-esteban-sacked-after-pegasus-spyware-revelations

UK: WHAT IS ‘GHOST DOM’ STATUS?

On 9 May, The Independent carried an article explaining this status, which is said to be affecting implementation of Russia sanctions.  It explains that being a “non-dom” for remittance purposes allows individuals not to pay UK tax on their worldwide income – provided they keep it overseas. However, there is another form, labelled as ‘ghost dom’ status, as this allows individuals, even if they live in the UK 365 days a year, not to file a tax return to HMRC altogether.  It is said by officials and tax advisors that ‘ghost doms’ have included super-rich figures with criminal connections and individuals with links to the Russian regime and oligarchs.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/ghost-dom-non-dom-sanctions-russia-b2074733.html

SWITZERLAND: EX-BANKER AVOIDS DEPORTATION TO RUSSIA DUE TO WAR IN UKRAINE

On 8 May, Swissinfo reported that former Russian banker Oleg Schigajew, who has been fighting extradition from Switzerland to Russia on embezzlement charges, can remain after legal proceedings against him have been stopped.

https://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/ex-banker-avoids-deportation-to-russia-due-to-war-in-ukraine/47576330

SANCTIONED OLIGARCHS’ USE OF THE HAWALA PAYMENT SYSTEM IS NOT NECESSARILY ILLEGAL

On 8 May, an article from Insider claims that Russian oligarchs have managed to get around financial sanctions by moving money through the hawala informal payment system.  It is reported that someone using hawala does not necessarily mean they are making illegal transactions. 

https://www.businessinsider.com/oligarchs-using-hawala-desperate-move-not-illegal-one-2022-5?r=US&IR=T

US: 2 FORMER MANAGERS OF NATIONAL GRID SENTENCED TO PRISON FOR BRIBERY AND KICKBACK SCHEME

A news release from US DoJ on 6 May advised the sentencing of 2 former National Grid managers employed in the facilities department, who steered contracts to certain contractors in exchange for hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes and kickbacks.

https://www.justice.gov/usao-edny/pr/two-former-managers-national-grid-sentenced-prison-bribery-and-kickback-scheme

NICARAGUA: UN SAYS NEW AML/CFT LAW HERALDS DAMAGING CRACKDOWN ON CIVIL SOCIETY

On 9 May, UN News reported that, under the guise of preventing money laundering and cutting off terrorist financing, a new law in Nicaragua further restricts the functioning of civil society, “contrary to the country’s human rights obligations”, the spokesperson for the UN human rights office (OHCHR) has said.

https://news.un.org/en/story/2022/05/1117802

PUSHING PRODUCTIVE COCA SEEDS, MEXICAN CARTELS RESHAPE COLOMBIA’S DRUG INDUSTRY

On 9 May, Yahoo News reported that Mexican drug cartels are involving themselves more closely in cocaine production in Colombia, paying farmers in advance and pushing cultivation of highly-productive strains, coca growers.  Top Mexican cartels like Sinaloa and Jalisco Nueva Generacion have long purchased cocaine from Colombia’s guerrilla groups and crime gangs.

https://news.yahoo.com/pushing-productive-coca-seeds-mexican-131409442.html

URABEÑOS SEEK TO PARALYSE PARTS OF COLOMBIA AFTER OTONIEL’S EXTRADITION TO US

On 6 May, Insight Crime reported that, after the extradition of former Urabeños leader, Otoniel, to the US, the armed group ordered a show of force across Colombia, imposing strict curfews on communities, burning vehicles and blocking off highways.

https://insightcrime.org/news/urabenos-seek-to-paralyze-parts-of-colombia-after-otoniels-extradition/

ISRAEL: BROTHER OF FORMER PRESIDENT KATSAV SUSPECTED OF LAUNDERING MONEY FOR CRIMINALS

On 10 May, Ynet reported that Yoram Katsav, brother of Moshe Katsav who served 5 years in prison for rape, arrested alongside 21 others suspected of taking part in widespread criminal activity, which saw gangs take over businesses via extortion.  Yoram Katsav was arrested on suspicion of distributing fictitious invoices, as part of a widespread investigation into a series of criminal offenses, including money laundering and financing of extensive criminal activities.

https://www.ynetnews.com/article/h1f7ttv8c#autoplay

UKRAINE MAY CANCEL MARKETING AUTHORISATIONS FOR PHARMACEUTICALS HELD BY COMPANIES WITH TIES TO PHARMACEUTICAL MANUFACTURING IN RUSSIA OR BELARUS

On 9 May, a post from Baker McKenzie reported on a new Bill aiming to prevent the turnover of pharmaceuticals manufactured in Russia or Belarus, or marketed by marketing authorisation holders with ties to pharmaceutical manufacturing in these countries. The restrictions set forth in the Draft Law are discussed in the post.

https://sanctionsnews.bakermckenzie.com/ukraine-may-cancel-marketing-authorizations-for-pharmaceuticals-held-by-companies-with-ties-to-pharmaceutical-manufacturing-in-russia-or-belarus/

US LESSOR BELIEVES IT MAY YET BE ABLE TO RECOVER SOME OF THE AIRCRAFT IT OWNS BUT WHICH HAVE BEEN SEIZED BY RUSSIA

On 6 May, Flight Global reported that US lessor Air Lease (ALC) made this announcement, despite taking an $802 million write-down in the value of that fleet. It said that, as circumstances may change in Russia, there could be avenues where some of these aircraft could be reinstated.

https://www.flightglobal.com/airlines/alc-sees-potential-return-of-certain-jets-seized-by-russia/148552.article

US DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE EXPANDS EXPORT CONTROLS ON SHIPMENTS OF EAR99 ITEMS TO OR WITHIN RUSSIA

On 10 May, an Alert from Torres Trade Law advised that, on 9 May, the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) announced a new final rule expanding export controls against Russia under the Export Administration Regulations (EAR). This imposes a licence requirement for exports, reexports, or transfers (in-country) to or within Russia for additional items subject to the EAR identified under specific Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) descriptions.

https://www.torrestradelaw.com/posts/Commerce-Expands-Export-Controls-on-Shipments-of-EAR99-Items-to-or-within-Russia/272

WHAT IS FENTANYL AND WHY IS IT BEHIND THE DEADLY SURGE IN US DRUG OVERDOSES?

On 10 May, an article in The Conversation by a Professor of Emergency Medicine, at the UMass Chan Medical School, says that fentanyl has become ubiquitous across the US, and it has transformed the illicit drug market and raised the risk of overdose.  He explains that fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that was originally developed as an analgesic – or painkiller – for surgery.  It has a specific chemical structure with multiple areas that can be modified, often illicitly, to form related compounds with marked differences in potency.

https://theconversation.com/what-is-fentanyl-and-why-is-it-behind-the-deadly-surge-in-us-drug-overdoses-a-medical-toxicologist-explains-182629

NAVIGATING RUSSIAN SANCTIONS IN CORPORATE JET TRANSACTIONS

On 10 May, an article from Holland & Knight LLP says that sanctions targeting Russia and certain Russian oligarchs have created unprecedented risk for certain international corporate jet transactions.  It warns that buyers and their brokers’ counsel need to “double-down” on diligence to ensure that any transactions they enter into comply with international sanctions and export control restrictions.

https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/navigating-russian-sanctions-in-9550705/

NIGERIA: PLANNED ARRAIGNMENT OF A FORMER MINISTER OF AVIATION, SENATOR STELLA ODUAH ON MONEY LAUNDERING CHARGES STALLED AGAIN

On 10 May, Sahara Reporters reported that the arraignment has been delayed for the sixth time.  There are 8 co-defendants alongside Ms Oduah. 

http://saharareporters.com/2022/05/10/court-adjourns-nigeria%E2%80%99s-ex-aviation-minister-oduahs-trial-over-malami%E2%80%99s-letter-amid

INDONESIA ARRESTS VESSEL AND CREW OVER ILLEGAL PALM OIL EXPORTS

On 10 May, Insurance Marine News reported that a container ship has been arrested, along with its 29 crew members, under suspicion of illegally attempting to export refined, bleached and deodorized (RBD) palm oil.  It was intercepted by Indonesian Navy, which claimed that the vessel was carrying 34 containers of RBD to Port Klang, Malaysia, despite the current Indonesian ban on palm oil exports.

https://insurancemarinenews.com/insurance-marine-news/indonesia-arrests-vessel-and-crew-over-illegal-palm-oil-exports/

UNICREDIT BANK LOSES CASE INVOLVING AN OIL CARGO IT WAS FINANCING THAT WENT MISSING AMID THE DEMISE OF OIL TRADER GULF PETROCHEM

On 10 May, Insurance Marine News reported that a court in the UK has rejected an attempt by Italy-based bank UniCredit to obtain $24.7 million in damages from shipping company Euronav after an oil cargo it was financing went missing amid the demise of oil trader Gulf Petrochem.  The case involved an alleged breach of the bill of lading contract in delivering part of a cargo of LSFO to a third party without production of the bills of lading.

https://insurancemarinenews.com/insurance-marine-news/unicredit-loses-24-7m-damages-claim-against-shipper-over-missing-oil-cargo/

COLOMBIA REMAINS THE LARGEST PRODUCER AND SUPPLIED THE MOST COCAINE TO NORTH AMERICA AND EUROPE BY SEA TRANSPORT

On 10 May, Insurance Marine News reported on comments following the publication of the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) report (World Drug Report 2021), and the 2021 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report.  It notes that, in 2021, the Colombian Navy broke its historical record of drug seizures, with 403 tons of illicit substances confiscated.  It was also noted that a method which had grown in popularity was the “rip-on/rip-off” method, where traffickers avoid profiling by breaking open containers of legitimate exports to ship the drugs, then using cloned customs seals to conceal the tampering.

https://insurancemarinenews.com/insurance-marine-news/skuld-updates-on-colombia-drug-smuggling/

https://www.skuld.com/topics/port/port-news/america/colombia-drug-smuggling—update/

RUSSIA SANCTIONS: LUXURY CARS PILE UP AT ZEEBRUGGE

On 10 May, Insurance Marine News reported that the logjam was the result of EU sanctions imposed on Russia from mid-March, which included a ban on the supply of luxury cars (those valued at more than €50,000). Since then, Zebrugge has received around 8,000 luxury cars for transshipment to Russia.

https://insurancemarinenews.com/insurance-marine-news/luxury-cars-pile-up-at-zeebrugge/

6 DRUG SMUGGLERS PRETENDING TO BE CRUISE PASSENGERS ARRESTED IN BRAZIL

On 10 May, Insurance Marine News reported that 5 Brazilians and an Argentinian had been arrested in Santos, Brazil.  They were arrested when they were about to board a cruise ship on a transatlantic cruise to Europe. It also notes an earlier case, on 10 April, 10 passengers had been arrested when a liner arrived in Spain during its transatlantic cruise from Brazil. 

https://insurancemarinenews.com/insurance-marine-news/drug-smugglers-pretending-to-be-cruise-passengers-arrested-in-brazil/

COMPANY INSOLVENCY AND THE ROLE OF THE LIQUIDATOR AS INVESTIGATOR – WALKING THE LINE BETWEEN INTERROGATION AND CO-OPERATION

On 9 May, M+P Legal in the Isle of Man published this article which discusses the statutory relief available to liquidators in Island legislation (the Companies Act 1931) to obtain company property (for example books and records) from officers or others connected with the company prior to its winding up. 

https://www.mplegal.im/info-centre/news/company-insolvency-and-the-role-of-the-liquidator-as-investigator-walking-the-line-between-interrogation-and-co-operation

Any modest contributions for my time and ongoing expenses are welcomed!  I have a page where you can do so, and where one-off contributions start as low as $3, at

https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

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