Tipping-off and prejudicing an investigation
Tipping-off and prejudicing an investigation

The following Risk & Compliance practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Tipping-off and prejudicing an investigation
  • Suspicious activity report (SAR)
  • Tipping-off in the regulated sector
  • The offence
  • Penalties
  • Defences
  • Prejudicing an investigation in the unregulated sector
  • The offence
  • Penalties
  • Defences
  • More...

There are several offences of tipping-off and prejudicing an investigation that apply to the regulated sector. There is also an offence of prejudicing an investigation that applies only to the unregulated sector. Both sectors are subject to an additional offence of interfering with documents.

This Practice Note discusses the offences of tipping-off and prejudicing an investigation under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA 2002). It reflects the requirements of the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 (MLR 2017), SI 2017/692 which came into force on 26 June 2017.

For more information on what constitutes the regulated sector, see Practice Note: What is money laundering?

Suspicious activity report (SAR)

The principal money laundering offences are:

  1. concealing criminal property

  2. being concerned in an arrangement that facilitates money laundering

  3. possessing criminal property

POCA 2002 imposes an obligation to report knowledge or suspicions of money laundering. This is done by way of a SAR.

You will have a defence to a principal money laundering offence if you make a SAR to the National Crime Agency (NCA) and you receive appropriate consent (or a defence) to do an act that would otherwise constitute such an offence.

POCA 2002 also imposes criminal sanctions for failing to make a SAR where you know or suspect that another person is engaging in money laundering.

For full details of your duty to

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