OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – OCTOBER 31

31 OCTOBER 2022

THIRD PARTY DISCLOSURE AND SERVICE OUT OF THE JURISDICTION

On 27 October, Stephenson Harwood LLP published an article following the decision in the Court of Appeal case of Gorbachev v Guriev, which confirmed that the English courts have the power to make an order for disclosure of documents against a third party outside of England and Wales.  The article considers the facts of the case and highlights the key implications for those seeking disclosure from those who are outside of jurisdiction of England & Wales.  It says that, while subject to certain limitations, overall these developments represent a significant step forward for litigants in the English courts seeking disclosure of documents.

https://www.shlegal.com/insights/third-party-disclosure-and-service-out-of-the-jurisdiction-gorbachev-v-guriev

INDIA: INSURERS WILL BE REQUIRED TO ACT RE AGENTS/INTERMEDIARIES WHO BRING CLIENTS IN VIOLATION OF AML RULES

On 30 October, Café Mutual in India reported that the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority has asked insurance companies to implement the new guidelines on AML/CFT by 1 January.  Under a new Act insurance companies can take strict action against agents/intermediaries who bring clients in violation of its requirements.

https://cafemutual.com/news/insurance/27806-insurers-to-act-against-agentsintermediaries-who-bring-clients-in-violation-of-anti-money-laundering-norms

THAILAND:  AML LAW IS BEING IMPROVED IN AN EFFORT TO BOOST THE COUNTRY’S STANDING IN THE US TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS (TIP) REPORT

On 31 October, The Nation reported on an amended version of the Anti-Money Laundering Act which will go into effect in 60 days.  A spokesperson is quoted as saying that in part the law has been amended to help improve Thailand’s TIP standing.

https://www.nationmultimedia.com/thailand/policies/40021567

COLLAPSE OF MINIMUM TAX DEAL COULD RESULT IN TRADE WARS, OECD TAX CHIEF WARNS

On 31 October, City AM reported that the US and Europe risk reigniting trade wars and losing hundreds of billions in tax revenue if they fail to implement the global tax deal for a minimum 15% tax rate, agreed to last year, the OECD’s departing tax chief has warned.

https://www.cityam.com/collapse-of-landmark-tax-deal-could-result-in-trade-wars-oecd-tax-chief-warns/

NEW YORK DOCTOR IMPLICATED IN A MASSIVE HEALTH FRAUD SCHEME HAS VANISHED OFF THE COAST 

On 31 October, the Daily Mail reported that the doctor mysteriously vanished in a boating accident off the Long Island coast a week before he was due in court on federal charges for being part of a $100 million health fraud scheme.  He was one of several doctors arrested in January in connection with large-scale fraud schemes operated by New York gangsters and involving car accident victims.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11372769/Manhattan-doctor-vanishes-week-court-date-involvement-100m-health-fraud-scheme.html

RUSSIAN SUPERYACHT REPORTEDLY DENIED ACCESS TO CAPE TOWN

On 30 October, Superyacht News by eSysman reported that the superyacht Nord had allegedly been denied permission to dock in Cape Town, due to the threat for its security from a large local Ukrainian community.  It had already sailed from Vladivostok to Hong Kong before setting out for Cape Town.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMfVNKRc38I

https://insurancemarinenews.com/insurance-marine-news/south-africa-says-it-will-welcome-sanctioned-russian-yacht-but-cape-town-not-happy/

https://sherloc.unodc.org/cld/uploads/pdf/Combating_Waste_Trafficking_-_Guide_on_Good_Legislative_Practices_-_EN.pdf

ITALY: CITY COUNCIL MEMBER SCOOPED UP IN ANTI-MAFIA SWEEP

On 31 October, OCCRP reported that an Italian city council member from the municipality of Bari was arrested for a mafia-affiliated vote-buying scheme during an anti-mafia sweep that saw 19 arrests between Puglia and Palermo.

https://www.occrp.org/en/daily/16966-city-council-member-scooped-up-in-anti-mafia-sweep-in-italy

REFRIGERANT PRODUCERS GROUP CALLS ON THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT TO BACK PROPOSALS TO REINFORCE EFFORTS TO STOP THE ILLEGAL TRADE IN HFC REFRIGERANTS

On 30 October, Cooling Post reported that the refrigerant producers group, the EFCTC, says that the Commission’s F-gas review proposals recognises the extent of the problem of black market trade in refrigerants and suggest a number of measures including bringing the trade within the EU Single Window environment, prompting stricter border controls and proposing “dissuasive and proportionate” fines in cases of breaches of the regulation.

https://www.coolingpost.com/world-news/efctc-calls-for-backing-of-illegal-trade-proposals/

UPCOMING LAW COMMISSION PUBLICATIONS

On 24 October, the Law Commission Business Plan 2022-2023 lists the consultations and reports it anticipates publishing during the year.  These include those on digital assets; review of the Arbitration Act 1996; decentralised autonomous organisations (DAO); contempt of Court (joint project with Public Law and the Law in Wales); confiscation of the proceeds of crime; and Corporate Criminal Liability options paper (joint project with Commercial and Common Law).

https://s3-eu-west-2.amazonaws.com/lawcom-prod-storage-11jsxou24uy7q/uploads/2015/05/Law-Commission_Business-Plan-2022-23_.pdf

UKRAINE SAYS 218 VESSELS BLOCKED AFTER RUSSIA SUSPENDS GRAIN DEAL

On 31 October, Hellenic Shipping News reported that a total of 218 vessels are “effectively blocked” due to Russia’s decision to suspend its participation in a grain export deal, Ukraine’s infrastructure ministry has said; and 22 ships with agricultural goods were waiting to leave Ukrainian ports.

https://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/ukraine-says-218-vessels-blocked-after-russia-suspends-grain-deal/

MORE THAN HALF OF TANKERS WHICH HAVE BEEN LOADING IN RUSSIAN PORTS IN THE LAST 6 MONTHS WERE CONTROLLED BY EU, G7 OR ALLIED COUNTRIES

On 31 October, Hellenic Shipping News said that a report from the shipbroker Gibson has reviewed the current state of the tanker market and the likely effect of the latest round of sanctions on Russian oil trade, and how it might be implemented. 

https://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/more-than-half-of-tankers-which-have-been-loading-in-russian-ports-in-the-last-6-months-were-controlled-by-eu-g7-of-allied-countries/

IN SINALOA, MEXICO, A DEADLY MIX OF SYNTHETIC DRUGS AND FORCED DISAPPEARANCES

On 27 October, Insight Crime published a report about an uptick in forced disappearances seen in Sinaloa in recent years is directly linked to one dynamic more than anything else: local consumption and sales of synthetic drugs.

https://insightcrime.org/news/sinaloa-mexico-synthetic-drugs-forced-disappearances/

KEY PLAYER IN PLUNDER OF VENEZUELA STATE OIL COMPANY SPENT $2.5 MILLION ON A LIFE OF LUXURY

On 26 October, El Pais carried an article saying that Diego Salazar, cousin to former minister Rafael Ramírez, shelled out $610,000 at the Ritz and $806,630 on watches while looting PDVSA between 2007 and 2012.  He is the cousin of Rafael Ramírez, a former energy minister under Hugo Chávez, former president of PDVSA and former ambassador to the UN. 

https://english.elpais.com/international/2022-10-26/key-player-in-plunder-of-venezuela-state-oil-company-spent-25-million-on-a-life-of-luxury.html

THE HUNT FOR THE DARK WEB’S BIGGEST KINGPIN: PART 1

On 25 October, Wired published Part 1 of a report about a  dark web mastermind known as Alpha02, a shadowy figure who oversaw millions of dollars a day in narcotics sales and had built the largest digital drug and crime bazaar in history, known as AlphaBay.

https://www.wired.com/story/alphabay-series-part-1-the-shadow/

RUSSIA USING FRONTS TO OBTAIN MILITARY TECHNOLOGY, WARNS DUTCH INTELLIGENCE SERVICE

On 27 October, NL Times reported that the Military Intelligence and Security Service (MIVD) is warning Dutch organisations that Russia is trying to obtain technology and parts needed for its war in Ukraine through front companies.

https://nltimes.nl/2022/10/28/russia-using-fronts-obtain-military-technology-warns-dutch-intelligence-service

HOW THE LIVESTOCK INDUSTRY FUNDS THE ‘GREENHOUSE GAS GURU’

On 31 October, Unearthed published a report saying that an investigation has revealed that the links of the Clarity and Leadership for Environmental Awareness and Research (CLEAR) Center at the University of California Davis, set up in 2019, to the meat and dairy industries are much deeper and more ingrained than previously known.  It says that documents show that the centre’s industry backers considered its greatest benefit to be its ability – as an apparently independent, academically credible voice – to make a positive case to the wider world about meat and dairy’s environmental impact. It says that Marion Nestle, the acclaimed food writer and a visiting professor at Cornell, likened the centre’s model to “the tobacco industry playbook”.

https://unearthed.greenpeace.org/2022/10/31/frank-mitloehner-uc-davis-climate-funding/ 

THE US CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE REVIEWS DIGITAL ASSET AML/CFT POLICY DEVELOPMENTS

On 28 October, Fried Frank published an article saying that the cRS has reviewed the development of an AML/CFT policy framework for digital assets.  It reviewed an Executive Order in March and the reports by various agencies prepared pursuant to it. CRS also highlighted previously issued regulatory guidance, significant enforcement actions and Treasury’s illicit finance Action Plan, which includes funding objectives for fiscal year 2023.

https://www.findknowdo.com/news/10/28/2022/crs-reviews-digital-asset-aml/cft-policy-developments 

US STATE DEPARTMENT RELEASES PLAN TO MITIGATE DIVERSION OF ADVANCED CONVENTIONAL WEAPONS FROM UKRAINE

On 31 October, the Center for International Policy said that a State Department plan from 27 October was designed to prevent diversion of certain types of advanced conventional weapons that the US is providing to Ukraine.  It focuses on 3 lines of effort: helping Ukraine and its neighbouring states account for and safeguard arms during transfer and storage, strengthening border management, and training law enforcement and security forces in Ukraine and its neighbours to detect and interdict illicit arms trafficking.  The plan notes the difficulty of traditional end-use monitoring (EUM) measures in a high-intensity conflict like the one in Ukraine. 

https://mailchi.mp/ciponline/s4355mg9zh-974266?e=05da5006d5

GERMAN PUBLISHES DRAFT SANCTIONS ENFORCEMENT ACT

On 31 October, the EU Sanctions blog reported that a second Act which aims to make structural improvements in its enforcement of sanctions and AML.  The Act includes establishment of a Central Office for the Enforcement of Sanctions to enforce EU sanctions in Germany.  The Central Office will assume certain enforcement powers introduced by an earlier Act.

https://www.europeansanctions.com/2022/10/germany-publishes-draft-sanctions-enforcement-act-ii/

REPORT: ORGANISED CRIME AND ARMED CONFLICTS IN EASTERN AFRICA

A report from ENACT Africa analyses organised crime and armed conflict to better inform law enforcement at a strategic level.  Organised violence for profit continues to affect Eastern Africa.  Kidnapping for ransom, looting, threats and sexual gender-based violence are among the most reported incidents in the region.  The driving factors for those crimes are sometimes difficult to discern and involve a combination of reasons such as economic gain, firearms sourcing (notably for cases of looting security forces), intention to control a community or territory.

https://enact-africa.s3.amazonaws.com/site/uploads/2022-09-20-interpol-analytical-oc-east-africa.pdf

WILL BURKINA FASO’S CLOSURE OF ARTISANAL GOLD MINES WORK THIS TIME?

On 28 October, an article from ENACT Africa posed this question, saying that the sector provides incomes for about 700 000 people – 13 times more than formal mining at 52 000 people – and is central to the country’s GDP.  Its importance will continue to climb as climate change increasingly threatens agriculture and livestock. The government has repeatedly closed artisanal gold mines to prevent terrorists from using them for financing.  Prohibitions can also swell illicit gold flows. In Ghana, suspected illegal gold flows significantly increased after a government ban on small-scale gold mining in the country from 2017 to 2018.  The article says that efforts to regularise informal artisanal gold mines and enhance operational safety at mine sites should be considered over blanket closures; and governments should rather provide artisanal miners with secure, reliable land rights and access to gold deposits.

https://enactafrica.org/enact-observer/will-burkina-fasos-closure-of-artisanal-gold-mines-work-this-time

THE DECISION TO GIVE CHINESE SHIPPING COMPANY COSCO A 25% MINORITY STAKE OF HAMBURG’S PORT HAS DRAWN CRITICISM FROM FRENCH POLICYMAKERS

On 31 October, EurActiv reported that the Chinese shipping giant Cosco was due to take a minority stake in Hamburg’s shipping port despite resistance from several German ministries.

https://www.euractiv.com/section/economy-jobs/news/french-policymakers-irked-by-chinese-companys-stake-in-hamburg-port/

UN, TURKEY, UKRAINE PRESS AHEAD WITH BLACK SEA GRAIN DEAL DESPITE RUSSIAN PULL-OUT

On 31 October, EurActiv reported that the UN, Turkey and Ukraine have pressed ahead to implement a Black Sea grain deal and agreed on a transit plan for 16 vessels to move forward, despite Russia’s withdrawal from the pact that has allowed the export of Ukrainian agricultural products to world markets.

https://www.euractiv.com/section/europe-s-east/news/un-turkey-ukraine-press-ahead-with-black-sea-grain-deal-despite-russian-pullout/

ISLE OF MAN SANCTIONS REGULATIONS ALIGN ISLAND LAW WITH THAT OF UK

A news release from the Isle of Man on 31 October advised that the Russia Sanctions (Application) (No.12) Regulations 2022 came into operation on 31 October and apply the further provisions of UK sanctions law relating to Russia financial and trade sanctions to the Island.

https://www.gov.im/news/2022/oct/31/sanctions-russia/

JERSEY: NEW GUIDANCE NOTES AND CODES OF PRACTICE PROPOSED FOR THE AML/CFT HANDBOOK

On 31 October, Jersey FSC issued a news release saying that it had published a consultation seeking feedback on further enhancement and clarification carried out on the Anti-money Laundering and Counter-terrorist Financing (AML/CFT) Handbook.  It says it is proposing to add a range of new and expanded guidance notes across the Handbook.

https://www.jerseyfsc.org/news-and-events/new-guidance-notes-and-codes-of-practice-proposed-for-the-amlcft-handbook/

https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

JERSEY’S ILL-FATED AIRCRAFT REGISTRY FINALLY CLOSES

On 31 October, the Jersey Evening Post reported that the aircraft registry – which ended up with just 1 aircraft on its books – has finally been closed.  It was launched in 2015 with hopes of attracting a wealth of aircraft, but just 4 aircraft were registered over the 7 years and by last month it had just a solitary Cessna to its name.

https://jerseyeveningpost.com/news/2022/10/31/jerseys-ill-fated-aircraft-registry-finally-closes/

FISHY NETWORKS: UNCOVERING THE COMPANIES AND INDIVIDUALS BEHIND ILLEGAL FISHING GLOBALLY

On 26 October, the Financial Transparency Coalition published this report saying that Africa concentrates 48.9% of identified industrial and semi-industrial vessels involved in illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing, 40% in West Africa alone which has become a global epicentre for these activities.  It is said to be the most extensive analysis of IUU fishing cases to date, and warns that developing countries lose billions of dollars in illicit money flows directly linked to this practice every year – up to $11.49 billion for Africa, and $2 billion for Argentina and $4 billion for Indonesia.  The study also reveals that the top 10 companies involved in IUU fishing concentrate nearly one-quarter of all reported vessels: 8 from China, 1 from Colombia and another from Spain which received millions of dollars in EU and other subsidies.  The report warns that almost no countries require information about owners when registering vessels or requesting fishing licences, meaning that those ultimately responsible for these activities are not detected and punished, resulting in fines often being applied to the vessel captains and crew.

https://financialtransparency.org/reports/fishy-networks-uncovering-companies-individuals-behind-illegal-fishing-globally/

https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

INTERPOL TECHNOLOGY ASSESSMENT REPORT ON THE METAVERSE

A report from Interpol on 20 October says that there are a number of policy issues connected to the Metaverse that will require international efforts to address.  Some of the issues identified in the report are broader than just law enforcement, but they will have a major impact on policing.

https://www.interpol.int/en/News-and-Events/News/2022/INTERPOL-launches-first-global-police-Metaverse

https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

SRA ANTI MONEY LAUNDERING ANNUAL REPORT 2021-22

SOLICITORS REGULATION AUTHORITY (SRA) REFERRED 20 SAR TO THE NCA RELATING TO SOLICITORS HANDLING £149 MILLION OF POTENTIALLY CRIMINAL FUNDS

On 31 October, Legal Futures reported that the SRA annual report says supervision activity showed some improvement in law firms’ compliance but still identified plenty of non-compliance.

https://www.legalfutures.co.uk/latest-news/sra-refers-firms-handling-transactions-worth-149m-to-crime-agency

https://www.sra.org.uk/sra/research-publications/aml-annual-report-2021-22/

https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y