New legislation designed to strengthen Jersey’s capabilities to fight financial crime has been introduced in the Crown Dependency.
The amendments to the Proceeds of Crime (Jersey) Law, approved by Jersey’s government on 26 June 2018, are designed to ensure Jersey complies with the recommendations highlighted in the Council of Europe’s Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures and Financing of Terrorism (MONEYVAL) report, published in 2016.
Overall, the two amendments are focused on strengthening Jersey’s ability to secure higher volumes of prosecutions and confiscations in cases of financial crime. Specifically, they widen the definition of ‘criminal property’ and change the requirement of two qualifying offences to just one, when making assumptions regarding criminal conduct.
Published in May 2016, the MONEYVAL report found that Jersey was compliant or largely compliant with 48 of the 49 Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations, placing it in the top tier of jurisdictions globally. It also concluded that Jersey’s beneficial ownership regime put it “in a leading position in meeting standards of beneficial ownership transparency.”
Commenting on the introduction of the new legislation, Geoff Cook, chief executive of the island’s financial services sector’s promotional body, Jersey Finance, said: “In 2016, MONEYVAL gave Jersey a glowing report on the effectiveness of its ability to tackle financial crime, giving it the highest rating of any jurisdiction anywhere in the world. At the same time, it made a couple of recommendations to tighten our defences even further.
“Whilst quite specific and technical in nature, their swift introduction clearly reinforces that Jersey stands aligned with efforts to enhance future transparency frameworks and is focused on clamping down on financial crime. It also underlines our willingness to work with global authorities to ensure our systems for prosecuting financial crime are amongst the best in the world.”
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