New method to combat money laundering agreed in Russia
The new method is directed against the scheme of legalizing funds through courts.
Rosfinmonitoring together with bankers has developed a new method of combating the legalization of illegally obtained funds through execution writ. This method will act against the specific scheme, but to eliminate "money laundering", it is necessary to change the legislation globally. This is written by RBC.
Information on the development of a new method appeared on the website of the Association of Regional Banks of Russia (ASROS).
According to RBC, the "judicial" scheme for money laundering was as follows. A certain company goes to court to collect a debt from another company, although in fact there is no debt. Nevertheless, the court makes a decision to satisfy the claim. After this bailiffs apply to the bank of the conditional ‘debtor’ for writing off the funds that go to the accounts of the ‘creditor’ in Russia or abroad. Thus, the ‘creditor’ could no longer face questions, where it had significant sums from. According to the publication, the scheme has been in effect already for a year, eventually gaining momentum. Employees of the anti-laundering agency together with the Supreme Court have long been looking for ways to combat this kind of swindling.
The last agreed method is the following: a bank that receives suspicious execution orders, makes a payment, but reports all information about it to Rosfinmonitoring. After that the credit organization, according to the anti-laundering law № 115-FZ, carries out actions aimed at ending the relationship with a suspicious client. Thus, banks do not violate both anti-laundering legislation and legislation on the judicial system.
The previous way of combating the "judicial" scheme was more complicated and risky, first of all for the bankers themselves. At the request of the Central Bank, the bankers had to refuse to carry out any suspicious operation and immediately break off relations with the clients who conducted them. Thus, the employees of the credit organization were between the hammer and the anvil: on the one hand, they had to comply with the court's decisions, on the other hand, they refused to comply with them according to the requirements of the Central Bank. In the meantime, they could face serious penalties for non-enforcement of court decisions: at best, it was a fine established in the Administrative Offences Code – half of the amount to be recovered, but not more than 1 million rubles ($17.7 thou). In the worst case, the actions of the banker fell under the Criminal Code, and then he faced a fine of up to 200 thousand rubles ($3.5 thou), deprivation of the right to work in this field and imprisonment for up to two years.
There was one more detail: a deal could be called "suspicious" after a repeated withdrawal of funds under a suit of the same company, but in most cases shell companies were used, so there were no recurring transactions – structures with different names came.
Other proposals were received from the side of bankers and – only three options of amendments.
The first option was to inscribe in № 115-FZ the right of the banker to refuse to perform a suspicious operation not only on the part of the client, but also on the part of the bailiff.
The second option was to stop the execution of the operation before the decision of Rosfinmonitoring.
The third option allowed banks to refuse to credit funds on the execution sheets to new accounts.