27 OCTOBER 2022
WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW ABOUT INCOTERMS AND HOW TO USE THEM?
On 25 October, LegalVision in Australia published this short introduction to the important Incoterms for international trade.
UK: FCA FINES MORTGAGE LENDER MILLIONS FOR MONEY LAUNDERING FAILURES
On 25 October, Rahman Ravelli reported on the fine imposed on Gatehouse Bank for significant weaknesses in its financial crime systems and controls.
CHINA HAS ANNOUNCED A LARGE NUMBER OF ARRESTS AS PART OF AN INVESTIGATION INTO GANG-RELATED MONEY LAUNDERING USING VIRTUAL CURRENCIES
On 25 October, Rahman Ravelli published an article saying that China has said it has arrested 93 people suspected of involvement in a gang that laundered up to $5.6 billion using virtual currencies, and that they had been buying cryptocurrency with illicit funds for at least 4 years.
US: EVERY STATE BUT ONE USES FEDERALLY BANNED FOREIGN TECH
On 26 October, the Defense One website reported that a report from Georgetown University’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology said that state and local government entities in nearly every state have purchased technologies from banned companies in recent years to support a host of public services – having purchased information and communications technology and services, or ICTS, from 5 banned Chinese companies between 2015 and 2021.
US: EXPORT ADMINISTRATION REGULATIONS (EAR) – FUNDAMENTALS & PRACTICE
On 26 October, Piper Alderman published an introduction to the EAR – the US regulatory regime that regulates the export and re-export of US items that have both commercial and military applications, commonly referred to as ‘dual-use’ items.
NEW FRAMEWORK FOR TRANSFERRING DATA TO THE US
On 25 October, SKW Schwartz in Germany published an article saying that data transfer to the US continues to be a difficult issue for data subjects and European supervisory authorities; but then reports on a new transatlantic data protection agreement with the EU. An Executive Order “on Enhancing Safeguards for United States Signals Intelligence Activities” is intended to create a new legal framework for data transfer to the US. However, the article also warns that, as of 27 December, data transfer to third countries may only take place on the basis of the new standard contractual clauses (SCC), which were issued by the EU Commission in June 2021. After this deadline, all old clauses will lose their effectiveness.
MONEY LAUNDERING TECHNIQUES #7 – REAL ESTATE, TRUSTS & THE NIGERIAN PRINCE
On 27 October, Baptiste Forestier published the latest of her informative pieces on money laundering techniques.
PARAGUAY AIMS TO INCREASE CRIMINAL PENALTIES FOR MONEY LAUNDERING
On 27 October, 5 Dias reported that the Secretariat for the Prevention of Money- and Property-Laundering (Seprelad) is to strengthen the criminal sanctions applied for money laundering offences. This was announced as part of a campaign within the framework of the National Day for the Prevention of Money Laundering on 29 October.
DANSKE BANK BOOKS $1.9 BILLION PROVISION TO SETTLE ESTONIA CASE
On 27 October, Yahoo Finance reported that the Danish lender has said on that it would book $1.9 billion provision in the third quarter for impending fines related to the bank’s involvement in a massive money laundering scandal in Estonia.
US: FORMER CANADIAN SAN DIEGO RESIDENT SENTENCED TO 20 YEARS FOR FUNDING ISIS TERRORIST ACTIVITIES IN SYRIA
A news release from US DoJ on 17 October advised that a Canadian national and former resident of San Diego, had been sentenced in federal court to 20 years in prison, followed by 36 months of supervised release, for conspiring with others to provide material support to terrorists engaged in violent activities such as murder, kidnapping and maiming of persons in Syria.
CANADA HAS ADDED 23 PEOPLE AND 7 ENTITIES UNDER ITS IRAN SANCTIONS REGIME
On 27 October, the EU Sanctions blog reported that the new listings are in response to ongoing human rights violations in the country.
CHINA IS ACCUSED OF OPERATING ‘SECRET POLICE STATIONS’ IN BRITAIN
On 27 October, the Mail Online reported that a report from human rights organisation Safeguard Defenders claims that China is operating dozens of secret police stations in plain view by disguising them as British restaurants, estate agents and other ordinary businesses. It warned China was operating more than 50 undeclared police hubs as part of a global network to force dissidents to return.
AUSTRALIA: NATIONAL ANTI-CORRUPTION COMMISSION BILL NEEDS A FEW TWEAKS
On 23 October, Transparency International reported that the National Anti-Corruption Commission Bill, introduced by the Labour government at the end of September, is good. Very good. It ticks most of the boxes, including corruption prevention and education. It’s 90% there.
UK SANCTIONS: TRANSPORT SANCTIONS – APPLY FOR A LICENCE
On 27 October, the Department for Transport issued updated guidance which added Russia to the list of countries where UK transport sanctions prohibit certain transport activities. The guidance explains how to apply for a transport sanctions licence to carry out transport-related activities which would otherwise be prohibited.
US: DoJ TARGETS DME FRAUD IN HEALTH AND DENTISTRY
On 27 October, Rivkin Radler published an article saying that the DoJ has been cracking down on fraud involving durable medical equipment (DME).
JERSEY: FINANCIAL CRIME RISK ASSESSMENT EXTENDED
On 27 October, a news release advised that any Islander who is the non-professional trustee of a privately-administered trust is being asked to contribute to a Government assessment of the risk of financial crime posed by legal persons and arrangements. The analysis of the assessment’s findings is due to be completed, and a report published, in 2023.
HONG KONG MEDIA TYCOON JIMMY LAI FOUND GUILTY OF FRAUD
On 25 October, Jurist reported that Jimmy Lai, a pro-democracy activist and media entrepreneur, has been found guilty of fraud charges in a Hong Kong district court. He also faces charges of collusion under Hong Kong’s National Security Law and sedition, and is already serving a prison sentence in Hong Kong for taking part in a vigil commemorating the victims of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.
US CUSTOMS OFFICERS SEIZE ANOTHER 2,265 COUNTERFEIT DRIVER’S LICENCES
On 27 October, the North Kentucky Tribune reported that, for the second time in a week, US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers discovered 2,265 counterfeit driver’s licences inside an inbound package. The shipment contained driver’s licences from all over the US. All the driver’s licenses were concealed inside the shipment manifested as postcards to avoid detection. The licences were arriving from Hong Kong and all lacked security features and were poor-quality.
SRI LANKA’S TUSSLE WITH BAD DEBT AND A BROKEN SYSTEM
A briefing from Control Risks on 27 October says that Sri Lanka’s government is implementing reforms to stabilise the economy after a preliminary agreement with the IMF. The briefing looks at some of the key political and economic challenges that are likely to punctuate the country’s journey towards recovery and stability.
ISRAEL PRESENTING US WITH INTELLIGENCE ON IRANIAN DRONES USED IN UKRAINE
On 27 October, Eurasia Review reported that the Israeli President plans to share intelligence about Iranian drones being used by Russian forces in Ukraine when he meets with President Joe Biden.
BRAZIL: TOXIC AIRCRAFT CARRIER DANGEROUSLY DRIFTING AFTER WEEKS AT SEA
On 27 October, the Eurasia Review reported on the position of the aircraft carrier Sao Paolo. The former French Navy Foch, built in 1963, was sold to Brazil in 2000. However, in 2001 she was sold for scrapping, having suffered from unserviceability. Turkey blocked its import due to concerns about potential harm to the marine environment from chemicals and asbestos aboard the vessel. However, ports in Brazil then banned its re-entry.
ELN GUERRILLAS OVERSEE RAMPANT CATTLE SMUGGLING BETWEEN COLOMBIA AND VENEZUELA
On 26 October, Insight Crime published an article saying that the National Liberation Army (Ejército de Liberación Nacional) in helping to move cattle between Venezuela’s northern state of Apure and the neighbouring Colombian state of Arauca.
UK: JUSTICE COMMITTEE CALLS FOR CHANGES TO THE WAY IN WHICH THE UK FIGHTS FRAUD, ENSURING IT IS GIVEN GREATER PRIORITY AND RESOURCING ACROSS THE JUSTICE SECTOR TO BOOST PREVENTION, INVESTIGATION AND PROSECUTION ALONGSIDE IMPROVING TREATMENT FOR VICTIMS OF THIS CRIME
On 27 October, an article from Eversheds Sutherland reported on a Report which emphasises the need for a change in the UK’s counter-fraud philosophy and practice.
THE CASE FOR DESIGNATING THE DONETSK AND LUHANSK PEOPLE’S MILITIAS AS FOREIGN TERRORIST ORGANIZATIONS (FTO)
On 24 October, a post on Lawfare looks at the pros and cons of such a designation — and whether it would have any marginal value over and above the sanctions already in place. It also provides a brief primer on the Donbas Region and the sanctions already in place.
RESEARCHERS CLAIM CANADIAN FORESTRY GIANT HAS HIDDEN LINKS TO INDONESIAN DEFORESTER
On 24 October, ICIJ reported that environmental watchdogs allege that Paper Excellence and Asia Pulp & Paper used shell companies to conceal corporate control by the same Indonesian tycoons accused of clearing more than 2 million hectares of Indonesian rainforest.
AIRBUS FACES FRESH BRIBERY SETTLEMENT
On 25 October, Yahoo Finance reported that French authorities are in talks with Airbus that could lead to the expansion of a record multi-national bribery settlement agreed in 2020. This is said to be connected to alleged bribery in the sale of 21 jets to Libya in 2007, part of a wider probe into links with Libya under late leader Muammar Gaddafi.
PROJECT mBridge: CONNECTING ECONOMIES THROUGH CBDC
On 26 October, the Bank for International Settlements advised that a joint report by the BIS Innovation Hub Hong Kong Centre, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, the Bank of Thailand, the Digital Currency Institute of the People’s Bank of China and the Central Bank of the UAE. The project team developed a new blockchain – the mBridge Ledger – custom-built by central banks for central banks to serve as a specialised and flexible platform for implementation of multi-currency cross-border payments in central bank digital currencies (CBDC).
CANADA: ‘CRYPTO KING’ NARROWLY AVOIDS ARREST BY HANDING OVER CELLPHONES TO BANKRUPTCY PROCEEDING
On 26 October, CBC reported that Ontario’s self-described “Crypto King” was nearly arrested twice in the last 2 months for failing to comply with the bankruptcy proceeding against him and his company from 119 creditors who claim they’re owed more than $25 million. It is said that the bankruptcy trustee investigating what happened to millions that creditors gave Aiden Pleterski to invest took the “extraordinary remedy” of requesting arrest warrants for the 23-year-old after he failed to hand over his cellphones and other devices as ordered.
ON THE CURRENT TRAJECTORY, GLOBAL PLASTIC WASTE WILL TRIPLE BY 2060
On 11 October, a blog post from the Wilson Center contained this prediction from the OECD, which predicts that this waste will triple by 2060 unless significant new mitigation efforts are undertaken.
FORMER AFGHAN SPECIAL OPERATIONS FORCES (SOF) – TRAINED BY THE US AND ITS ALLIES – ARE NOW FIGHTING IN UKRAINE ON BEHALF OF RUSSIA
On 26 October, The Drive reported that the last commander of Afghan troops says that the Afghans are among tens of thousands of former Afghan troops – including about 5,000 former special operations forces – who fled to Iran last year, many of whom are being recruited with offers of income and security for them and their families.
MAPPING THE US ESCALATION LADDER AGAINST THE ORTEGA-MURILLO REGIME IN NICARAGUA
On 3 October, an article from CSIS says that since 2001 of Daniel Ortega as president and his wife, Rosario Murillo, as vice president, the regime has further consolidated power, eviscerated democratic institutions, and committed rampant human rights abuses. Recently, Nicaraguan authorities and their backers have stepped up attacks on the Catholic Church, detaining members of the clergy, imposing strict limits on the practice of religion, and in some cases, brutalising bishops, priests, and congregations. It asks what can the US Government do to dial up the pressure on the Ortega regime? It presents options within a series of levels, organized from 1 to 5, in ascending order, based on the feasibility of each action and the degree of impact that each one would be expected to have on the regime.
THE PROMISE OF THE ZONES FOR EMPLOYMENT AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (ZEDE) IN HONDURAS
On 17 October, CSIS published a report about a type of Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Honduras. It explains that ZEDE are a type of SEZ that delegates greater autonomy to zone administrators. Established in 2013 through a constitutional amendment, within their borders, they have a significant degree of freedom to adopt their own taxation systems and legal regimes, although these are subject to oversight by a national committee. This is crucial for the well-being of ZEDE, as it allows them to replicate laws and regulatory regimes from other countries, making them more compatible for creating a business. Indeed, legislation could even be drawn from a mixture of different systems, depending on the best fit. In addition to organising their own legal systems, they were empowered to provide their own civil services, including housing, utilities, law enforcement, and dispute resolution. With a focus on building grassroots institutions, the ZEDE model appears designed to create zones that emulate Hong Kong even more closely than the Shenzhen SEZ. The report provides an overview of what ZEDE are, what their purpose is, and what the legal framework looks like for their existence. Following that assessment, the paper will juxtapose the current challenges threatening the survival of ZEDE with the potential that they have for creating long-term economic growth. Finally, the paper presents a series of recommendations for policymakers on what steps can be taken from this point onward.
BOLIVIA SUSPENDS FOOD EXPORTS TO GUARANTEE LOCAL SUPPLY
On 27 October, TeleSUR reported that the administration of President Luis Arce decided to temporarily suspend the export of some agricultural products to guarantee domestic food supply.
RUSSIA’S SBERBANK OPENS ‘VOSTRO’ RUPEE ACCOUNTS AT INDIA BRANCHES
On 24 October, Reuters reported that Sberbank is offering this type of account to clients to allow them to carry out rupee-denominated transactions to avoid the impact of Western sanctions.
US AND EU WARN OF RUSSIAN DEFENCE AND MILITARY SUPPLY CHAINS AND SANCTIONS EVASION
On 27 October, an article from Kharon says that Russia is attempting to evade Western sanctions and procure foreign technology through front companies and facilitators abroad. It notes that US and European countries have recently announced a series of sanctions, criminal charges, and arrests against front companies, businesses, and individuals in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East involved in Russia’s supply chain of weapons, military equipment, and essential foreign-sourced electronic components that power them.
NEW CRISIS BREWING ON CYPRUS AFTER US LIFTS ARMS EMBARGO
On 27 October, Al Jazeera reported that Turkish-Cypriot authorities could be preparing to evict UN peacekeepers from their bases in northern Cyprus, triggering a new political and security crisis on the divided island.
TERRORIST AND OTHER MILITANT GROUPS IN PAKISTAN
On 25 October, the US Congressional Research Service published a briefing paper saying that US officials have identified Pakistan as a base of operations and/or target for numerous armed, nonstate militant groups, some of which have existed since the 1980s.