Amendments to the Prevention of Money Laundering and Funding of Terrorism Regulations were introduced on 22 May 2020 to address some of the recommendations of the MONEYVAL Fifth Round Mutual Evaluation Report issued in July 2019 (hereafter ‘Report’). The main changes concern the deadlines for submitting Suspicious Transactions Report (STR) and the responsibility of certain officers and employees regarding money laundering and terrorist financing.
The deadline for submission of an STR in a case of knowledge, suspicion, reasonable ground of suspicion or attempt of money laundering or terrorist financing is reduced from five working days to “promptly”. The new rule is in line with Recommendation 20 of the Report which stated, ”the disclosure has to be made as soon as it is reasonably practicable, but not later than five working days from when the knowledge or suspicion first arose. This mechanism to file STRs casts doubts on fulfilment of the obligation to do so “promptly” in line with the FATF Recommendations.”
Where any individual who is a director, MLRO, member of a senior executive body, or an officer at management level ( whose duties shall include the monitoring of the day-to-day implementation of the AML measures, policies, controls and procedures) of a body or other association of persons commits a contravention, they are liable to an administrative penalty of between €1,000 and €250,000 where the contravention is committed due to the act or omission of the given officer. Furthermore, the referred individual can also be suspended or precluded from exercising their functions within the same or any other subject person by any licencing authority upon the recommendation of the FIAU.
News update by Dr Agnes Antal.
For more information on the above kindly contact Mr Stefan Briffa or Mr Reuben Portanier.
This article is not intended to impart legal advice and readers are asked to seek verification of statements made before acting on them.