Anti-money laundering—United Kingdom—Q&A guide

The following Corporate Crime practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Anti-money laundering—United Kingdom—Q&A guide
  • 1. Identify your jurisdiction’s money laundering and anti-money laundering (AML) laws and regulations. Describe the main elements of these laws.
  • 2. Describe any specific powers to identify proceeds of crime or to require an explanation as to the source of funds.
  • 3. Which government entities enforce your jurisdiction’s money laundering laws?
  • 4. Can both natural and legal persons be prosecuted for money laundering?
  • 5. What constitutes money laundering?
  • 6. Is there any limitation on the types of assets or transactions that can form the basis of a money laundering offence?
  • 7. Generally, what constitute predicate offences?
  • 8. Are there any codified or common law defences to charges of money laundering?
  • 9. What is the range of outcomes in criminal money laundering cases?
  • More...

Anti-money laundering—United Kingdom—Q&A guide

This Practice Note contains a jurisdiction-specific Q&A guide to anti-money laundering in United Kingdom published as part of the Lexology Getting the Deal Through series by Law Business Research (published: June 2021).

Authors: White & Case LLP—Jonah Anderson

1. Identify your jurisdiction’s money laundering and anti-money laundering (AML) laws and regulations. Describe the main elements of these laws.

The principal laws governing money laundering in the United Kingdom are the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA) and the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 (the Regulations).

POCA

At the heart of the money laundering offences is the concept of criminal property. Criminal property (effectively the proceeds of crime) is property that constitutes a person's benefit from criminal conduct or represents such a benefit, in whole or in part and whether directly or indirectly, and that the offender knows or suspects that it constitutes such a benefit (section 340(3)). Criminal conduct is conduct that constitutes an offence in any part of the UK or would constitute an offence in any part of the UK if it occurred there (section 340(2)).

POCA creates three primary money laundering offences criminalising involvement with criminal property (the primary offences):

  1. concealing, disguising, converting, transferring or removing criminal property from England and Wales or from Scotland or Northern Ireland (section 327);

  2. entering into or becoming concerned

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