Frequently Asked Questions - Finiancial Investigations
It is the responsibility of financial institutions to establish and implant programmes, policies, procedures and controls that are necessary to prevent or detect money laundering. These include;
- Established procedures to ensure high standards of integrity of employees
- Evaluation of employees’ personal employment and financial history
- Training programmes for employees in the recognition and handling of transactions by persons believed to be engaged in money laundering
- Independent audit to ensure established programmes are being implemented
- Establish identification and transaction verification procedures and record-keeping procedures in accordance with regulations under the Act.
Under the Act, the ‘consent to perform a prohibited act’ prevents a protected disclosure from being considered a breach providing that
- the information is disclosed to an authorized or nominated officer
- the information came to the person in the course of the person’s trade, profession, business or employment
- the information causes that person to believe or have reasonable grounds to believe that another person has engaged in money laundering.
- the disclosure is made in such a form or manner as may be prescribed by the Regulations.
A financial institution or a regulated business that fails to make a report or comply with a disclosure order commits an offence and is liable upon conviction before a Resident Magistrate Court to a fine not exceeding $400,000.oo
A person who commits an offence to disclose information regarding transactions believed to be related to money laundering knowingly is liable on conviction before a Resident Magistrate Court to a fine not exceeding $1m , or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or both.
On conviction in a Circuit Court to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years or to both fine and imprisonment.
Any information received by FID is treated with the strictest of confidentiality. An allegation of fraud should however be substantiated with some form of Documentation name of offender nature of offence quantities of money defrauded (if applicable) Information on money laundering activities does not necessarily require the informant to disclose his/her identity.
It is the duty of Financial Institutions operating under the Regulations Act to report certain transactions referred to as ‘suspicious transactions. These include;
- Building Societies
- Money transfer or remittance agencies
- Societies registered under the cooperative society act
- Investment Dealers
- Insurance Companies and Brokers
Terrorist financing is the financial support in any for, of terrorism or of those who encourage, plan or engage in terrorism. Terrorist financing may involve funds raised from legitimate sources such as personal donations and profits from businesses and charitable organizations, as well as from criminal sources such as the drug trade, smuggling of weapons and other goods, kidnapping, fraud and extortion. The Chief Technical Director of the FID was named as the Designated Authority under the Terrorism Prevention (Designated Authority) Act 2006. This allows FID to receive and process reports on terrorist financing
The Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) (May 20, 2007) is the main Act governing the FID, along with the Terrorism Prevention Act and Regulations. Under POCA a person commits an offence if that person;
- engages in a transaction that involves criminal property (drug trafficking, fraud, corruption, extortion)
- conceals, disguises, disposes of or bring into Jamaica any such property. Concealing or disguising property includes concealing, disguising the nature of the property, source, location, disposition, movement or ownership of property.
- Enters into an arrangements that facilitates the acquisition, retention, use or control of the criminal property by or on behalf of another person knowing the property to be illegal.
- Converts transfer or removes any such property from Jamaica knowing it to be criminal property.
The process of making money derived from criminal activity (particularly drug offence, fraud, corruption, arms trafficking and other serious crimes) appear to be from a legitimate source. In short, making ‘dirty money’ seem clean.
- Information regarding ‘suspicious transactions’
- Request pertaining to due diligence checks
- Corruption activities