FATF Publishes Report on Professional Money Laundering

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Saturday, August 11, 2018
Bruce Zagaris

  On July 24, 2018, for the first time the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) published a  project  on professional money launderers (PMLs) that specialize in enabling criminals to evade anti-money laundering (AML) and counter terrorist financing (CTF)  safeguards and sanctions in order to enjoy the profits from illegal activities.   The report aims to describe the functions and characteristics that define a “professional” money launderer, namely those individuals, organizations and networks that are involved in third-party laundering for a fee or commission. Therefore, the report focuses on money laundering threats as opposed to vulnerabilities.  It addresses criminal actors, including organized crime groups that specialize in the provision of professional money laundering services and complicit actors who are knowingly involved, or are deliberately negligent, in the laundering process. While PMLs may act in a professional capacity (e.g. lawyer, accountant) and serve some legitimate clients, the report aims to identify those actors who serve criminal clients whether on a fulltime or part-time basis.