OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – MAY 29

Panama Covid-19 update – the Ministry of Education has reported that the number of Covid cases affecting the education sector represents 0.35% of 1,107,000 thousand students, teachers and administrators who attend official and public educational centres.

Meanwhile, test results remain above 20%, with 2 new fatalities and 2,123 new cases, leading to there being 28,740 active cases, with 39 in ICU and 221 in other wards.

29 MAY 2022

SUPERYACHTS OWNED BY RUSSIAN OLIGARCHS ARE VANISHING FROM GLOBAL TRACKING SYSTEMS TO AVOID SANCTIONS

On 29 May, Yahoo News carried an article about reports that superyachts of 6 sanctioned oligarchs have disappeared from global tracking systems.  The Observer newspaper analysed AIS (automatic identification system) data from tracking company Vessels Value, which indicated 6 yachts owned by sanctioned Russian oligarchs had disappeared from tracking systems.

https://news.yahoo.com/superyachts-owned-russian-oligarchs-vanishing-095116115.html

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/may/28/revealed-russia-linked-superyachts-going-dark-to-avoid-tracking-systems

US FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION (FMC) IS CONTINUING TO PUSH ON UNFAIR CARRIER CHARGES AS AN ANTI-COMPETITIVE BURDEN TO AMERICAN SHIPPERS AND IMPORTERS

On 24 May, Forwarderlaw published an article saying that the FMC had required enhanced information in respect of pricing and capacity, in order to assist the FMC in its objective of assessing marketplace competitiveness.  The Commission’s Bureau of Trade Analysis (BTA) is tasked with reviewing compliance with liner agreements and ensuring that they do not have an anti-competitive impact in the marketplace.  A recent investigation highlighted 2 broad areas of concern: high ocean freight rates, and burdensome detention and demurrage charges.

http://forwarderlaw.com/2022/05/24/more-moves-from-fmc-on-carrier-charges/

IS THE US GUN PROBLEM BECOMING CANADA’S GUN PROBLEM?

On 29 May, an article in The Observer says that experts and gun control advocates caution that Canada’s relatively strict laws do not fully shield it from violence of the kind that is rampant in the US.  Canada has one of the world’s highest per-capita gun ownership rates, but still trails far behind its southern neighbour, both in gun ownership rates and firearms-related incidents.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/may/29/canada-gun-problem-violence

WHY SÃO PAULO’S GUARULHOS AIRPORT BECAME COCAINE DISPATCH POINT TO EUROPE AND AFRICA

On 27 May, Insight Crime reported that cocaine seizures have jumped at the Guarulhos International Airport near São Paulo, Brazil, showing that neither COVID-19 nor international law enforcement cooperation have pushed traffickers away from South America’s busiest air hub.  It says that cocaine seizures in Guarulhos show 2 main modus operandi for moving cocaine, broadly targeting 2 different routes – large cocaine shipments are concealed in air cargo with the complicity of airport workers; and the use of drug couriers to transport smaller quantities of cocaine in their luggage or on their person, often to destinations in Africa.

https://insightcrime.org/news/brazil-guarulhos-airport-cocaine-dispatch-europe-africa/

NFT ARE ACCELERATING THE PACE OF ART CRIME — DIGITAL SLEUTHS ARE SHARPENING THEIR TOOLS TO FIGHT WRONGDOERS ONLINE

On 26 May, the Art Newspaper carried a report saying that gone are the days of art detectives raiding garages for stashed loot, or happily examining paint layers for inconsistencies in pigments.  Instead, there is a new era of discord channels, smart contracts and open-source intelligence to grapple with.  It says that new methodologies are increasingly common.  These include: Pump and dump schemes (the act of illegally boosting a scheme, before selling up whilst prices are high), rug pulls (where developers obtain funds for a project before vanishing) and the outright theft or fraud surrounding NFT.

https://www.theartnewspaper.com/2022/05/26/digital-art-sleuthsa-new-era-for-the-investigation-of-wrongdoing-in-the-market

THE HERMÈS LAWSUIT MAY DICTATE THE FUTURE OF NFT

On 19 May, NFT Now carried an article about how French fashion house Hermès International is suing artist Mason Rothschild in the US for trademark infringement following the release of a collection of 100 NFT Birkin bags covered in faux fur in a range of colours and designs.  It says that this case brings new issues to the legal landscape that force the intersection of intellectual property law, constitutional law, technology, and fashion.

https://nftnow.com/guides/how-the-hermes-lawsuit-could-determine-the-future-of-trademark-rights-in-nfts/

BELGIAN DIAMOND DEALERS SUE FOR ACCESS TO FROZEN ACCOUNTS

On 27 May, Deutsche Welle reported that diamond traders in Antwerp are suing to regain access to their frozen bank accounts after they were excluded from business under de-risking moves after new EU AML rules applied.

https://www.dw.com/en/belgian-diamond-dealers-sue-for-access-to-frozen-accounts/av-61951126

US: BANK CEO CONVICTED FOR TAKING BRIBES IN CONNECTION WITH LOANS GUARANTEED BY THE SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION

A news release from US DoJ on 26 May announced the conviction of EDWARD SHIN, 58, then-CEO of a Pennsylvania-based bank for taking bribes in connection with the Bank’s issuance of loans that were guaranteed by the US Small Business Administration.  He had been arrested in 2019.

https://www.justice.gov/usao-sdny/pr/bank-ceo-convicted-taking-bribes-connection-loans-guaranteed-small-business

BELLINGCAT ANNUAL REPORT

On 29 May, investigative NGO Bellingcat released its annual report which looks back at some of its biggest investigations from last year, describes how it has grown and highlights its work training journalists and researchers around the world.  It also details its contribution towards justice and accountability projects.

https://www.bellingcat.com/app/uploads/2022/05/Bellingcat-Annual-Report-2021.pdf

FASCIST FASHION: HOW MAINSTREAM BUSINESSES ENABLE THE SALE OF FAR-RIGHT MERCHANDISE

On 24 May, a report from Bellingcat says that an investigation has found that a number of far-right and neo-Nazi online stores are openly utilising the infrastructure provided by major payment processors, commercial content management systems and web domain registrars.  It was also able to establish that some far-right web stores appeared to be purchasing garments from wholesale manufacturers, whose charters celebrate diversity and equality, before embossing their own messaging onto the clothing and selling it at a profit.  It refers to payment processing platforms such as Payops, Nets Easy, MolliePayments, Bungeecolud and Paysera.

https://www.bellingcat.com/news/2022/05/24/fascist-fashion-how-mainstream-businesses-enable-the-sale-of-far-right-merchandise/

THE DEFINITIVE GUIDE TO ONLINE GAMING AND BETTING IN THE US

Ifrah Law has published this e-book, available to download.  It sets out to cover online gaming and betting from A to Z – the history, individual state legislation and prospects for the future of the industry.

https://www.ifrahlaw.com/insights/guide-to-online-gaming-and-betting-in-united-states/

NEW UK ANTI-TRAFFICKING CHARITY LAUNCHED

On 29 May, Ekklesia reported that a new UK human rights charity working to eliminate human trafficking has been launched.  The Mary Ward Loreto UK will work in tandem with its elder sister organisation, the Albania-based Mary Ward Loreto Foundation, to sustain the work being carried out in Albania caring for, supporting and regenerating the lives and prospects of young Albanians, mainly women and children, who but for this support might be vulnerable to human trafficking.

https://www.ekklesia.co.uk/2022/05/29/new-uk-human-rights-charity-launched/

NETHERLANDS: RABOBANK MANAGEMENT ALLEGEDLY KNEW ABOUT MONEY LAUNDERING FOR YEARS

On 29 May, the NL Times reported that Rabobank was allegedly aware for the past 8 years that its approach to money laundering was inadequate.  An internal audit in 2014 failed most of the bank’s local offices for poorly screening money laundering risks, years before the bank came clean publicly.

https://nltimes.nl/2022/05/29/rabobank-management-allegedly-knew-money-laundering-years

KEY DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE 2017 AND 2021 CAYMAN ISLANDS NATIONAL RISK ASSESSMENTS

The table below from Claritas Compliance is said to show the key differences between the 2017 and 2021 Cayman Islands National Risk Assessments.  It is noted that the 2021 NRA uses a different methodology, is based on more data, and incorporates new sectors and risk areas (e.g. VASP and Non-Profit Organisations); and new threats have been identified for the Cayman Islands, from domestic and international origins. The threats have also been risk-rated.

https://www.linkedin.com/company/claritas-compliance/posts/?feedView=all

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

NOTE THAT THE ABOVE LINK IS NOW CORRECTED AND WORKS!

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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