Subject to Inquiry

Subject to Inquiry

THE LATEST ON GOVERNMENT INQUIRIES AND ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS

Government Investigations and White Collar Litigation Group

Category Archives: Anti-Money Laundering

Subscribe to Anti-Money Laundering RSS Feed
Anti-Money Laundering, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Securities and Commodities

SEC Opens Cease-and-Desist Order Proceeding against Broker-Dealer and Chief Compliance / AML Officer

As we have highlighted in prior posts, regulators of financial institutions, including FinCEN, FINRA and SEC, have increasingly brought actions to bring organizations – and individuals – into compliance with AML / BSA obligations.  This enforcement activity is consistent with FinCEN’s August 2014 Advisory, now nearly three years old, emphasizing the idea that U.S. financial institutions… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance

FinCEN Opens 2017 with SAR Sharing Guidance for Casinos

Financial institutions’ ability to share suspicious activity reports (“SARs”) within the corporate organizational structure serves as an important tool for Bank Secrecy Act compliance and risk avoidance.  FinCEN began 2017 by reminding casinos of their ability to share information under this rule. Subject to certain limitations, casinos may share with domestic parents and affiliates suspicious… Continue Reading
Anti-Bribery and Corruption, Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends

UK set to shake up Corruption and Money Laundering Enforcement

The UK Government introduced the Criminal Finances Bill to Parliament today (13 October 2016), which will now start its passage through the parliamentary approval process before becoming law. The Government hopes that the Bill “will significantly improve the government’s ability to tackle money laundering and corruption, recover the proceeds of crime, and counter terrorist financing”, and… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Financial Institution Regulation

FinCEN Associate Director for Enforcement Delivers Remarks at Title 31 Conference, Stresses Importance of Culture of Compliance

On the day after his appointment in August 2016, the Associate Director for Enforcement for the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), Thomas Ott, addressed the National Title 31 Suspicious Activity & Risk Assessment Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.  In his remarks, he (1) covered recent enforcement actions, (2) sought to dispel myths or misconceptions about… Continue Reading
Anti-Bribery and Corruption, Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance

The Anti-Corruption Summit – UK plans for further corporate criminal offences, and a host of other proposals

The UK’s Prime Minster David Cameron has just hosted the  “Anti-Corruption Summit”, a first of its kind, bringing together world leaders, business, and civil society with the goal of seeking to agree on a package of steps to: Expose corruption so there is nowhere to hide Punish the perpetrator and support those affected by corruption Drive… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering

FinCEN Imposes New Reporting Requirements on New York and Miami Real Estate Markets

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) recently announced two geographic targeting orders (GTOs) imposing new reporting and recordkeeping requirements on title insurance companies operating in New York City and Miami-Dade County. The requirements are effective beginning March 1, 2016, and continue in effect until August 27, 2016. GTOs are temporary measures that FinCEN imposes on… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Financial Institution Regulation, Fraud, Deception and False Claims

FinCEN Announces First Card Club AML Enforcement Action

Just in time for Christmas, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), the financial industry (including casinos and card clubs) regulator, announced its first-ever enforcement action against a card club, California’s Oaks Card Club (Oaks). The enforcement action, which carried a penalty of $650,000, is the latest in a string of actions against gaming enterprises and is… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Financial Institution Regulation

FinCEN Announces Caesars Penalty After Multiyear Investigation

This week the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced a Consent Agreement that imposed an $8 million civil penalty against Desert Palace, Inc. d/b/a Caesars Palace. Caesars first disclosed the investigation in SEC filings in late 2013. The investigation grew out of a 2012 audit performed by FinCEN’s examiner, the Internal Revenue Service Small Business/Self-Employed… Continue Reading
Anti-Bribery and Corruption, Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance

SEC and FinCEN Delivering One-Two Punch to Private Equity

Starting in January, it was widely reported that the SEC had upped its FCPA scrutiny of private equity funds required to register as investment advisers under Dodd-Frank, with requests for information being issued to a number of funds in connection with their courting of sovereign wealth funds. For many newly-regulated funds, this was likely viewed… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Financial Institution Regulation

FinCEN Proposes Rule Requiring Investment Adviser AML Compliance

Investment advisers may soon face increased costs and scrutiny thanks to a proposed rule issued by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).  On Tuesday, August 25, FinCEN proposed a rule that would require many investment advisers to implement AML compliance programs, including the filing of suspicious activity reports (SARs) and currency transaction reports (CTRs). The CTR requirement comes… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Financial Institution Regulation, Fraud, Deception and False Claims

FinCEN Final Rule on Foreign Bank Requires Covered Financial Institutions to Take “Special Measures”

On July 22, 2015, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) published in the Federal Register a final rule pursuant to Section 311 of the Patriot Act against FBME Bank Ltd. (FBME, formerly known as Federal Bank of the Middle East). FBME is based in Tanzania but does most of its… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Financial Institution Regulation

Casino Forfeiture a Reminder that FinCEN’s Regulatory Oversight May Involve DOJ and Criminal Penalty

In early June 2015, FinCEN assessed a civil money penalty on the Tinian Dynasty Hotel & Casino, located in the Northern Mariana Islands, an archipelago to the east of the Philippines (don’t feel bad if you click here to learn a little more). Being a U.S. territory, the Northern Marianas are subject to federal regulation.… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Financial Institution Regulation

FinCEN Reasserts its Commitment to Casino Oversight and Enforcement

In a recent post we described a number of steps taken over the last year by the primary federal regulator for casinos – the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) – that should cause casino operators to have Title 31 and Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) compliance among their top priorities. Based on this FinCEN activity, the… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Financial Institution Regulation, Fraud, Deception and False Claims

AML Compliance Developments in the Gaming Industry

Executives of regulated entities often lament that fulfilling compliance obligations interferes with their ability to operate their business. However, an extensive (and extended) regulator investigation with the potential for civil and / or criminal penalties can present an even greater obstacle to running a business. Trends over the last year in the gaming industry suggest… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance

FinCEN Issues Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Andorran Bank as “Primary Money Laundering Concern”

On March 10, 2015, the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) named Banca Privada d’Andorra (BPA) a foreign financial institution of “primary money laundering concern,” a measure that will prohibit BPA from engaging in transactions with the U.S. financial system. Along with this announcement, FinCEN issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking which will require… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Uncategorized

Mind the Red Flags – FinCEN Issues Penalty for Failure to File SARs on Director’s Suspicious Activity

The U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) recently penalized First National Community Bank (FNCB) $1.5 million for failing to file suspicious activity reports (SARs) despite the existence of significant red flags. As described in FinCEN’s Feb. 27, 2015, press release, the accounts in question were controlled by Michael Conahan, a member of FNCB’s… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Fraud, Deception and False Claims

Don’t Turn a Blind Eye – Individual Liability for Failure to Comply with BSA Reporting Requirements

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced on August 20, 2014, that it had reached an agreement with a casino official permanently barring him from working in financial institutions as a result of his willful violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA). The individual in question, Mr. George Que, assisted high-end customers in avoiding detection… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance

How far does the SAR privilege extend? It depends on which court you ask.

Financial institutions know that suspicious activity reports (SARs) and information that would reveal a SAR’s existence may not be disclosed except under specific, limited circumstances. However, when you’re facing a civil discovery request, deciphering exactly what falls within the privilege can be a challenge. Take one recent decision from the Court of Appeals of the… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Financial Institution Regulation, Fraud, Deception and False Claims

The CFPB and BSA/AML Compliance – Can the CFPB Properly Request a SAR?

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has made waves lately, applying increased scrutiny to areas such as auto lending and account fees for college-student banking. Given the CFPB’s wide license to oversee and enforce the consumer financial laws, financial institutions may be wondering where the CFPB will move next. The CFPB holds broad authority, and… Continue Reading
Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Fraud, Deception and False Claims, Uncategorized

SARs and Confidentiality – When Law Enforcement and Regulators Come Calling

Financial institutions often encounter suspicious transactions that warrant the filing of a suspicious activity report (“SAR”).  When this occurs, the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”) and federal regulations specifically prohibit the unauthorized disclosure of the SAR, or any information that may reveal the existence of the SAR. This confidentiality requirement may place certain employees, especially those… Continue Reading
Anti-Bribery and Corruption, Anti-Money Laundering, Compliance, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Financial Institution Regulation

The Financial Services Authority continues its thematic reviews into anticorruption compliance – now it is the turn of asset managers

So far, since the Bribery Act came into force on 1st July 2011, the largest fines have been dished out by the FSA, which regulates the financial services sector in the UK, rather than by the courts… Continue Reading