Anti-money laundering act amended to expand scope

A proposed amendment to the Money Laundering Control Act was passed by the Legislative Yuan Friday, under which more professions are required to report to the authorities any suspicious financial transactions by their clients.

Under the revised act, in addition to financial institutions, jewelry store operators, land registration agents, real estate brokers, practicing lawyers and accountants are all obliged to make such reports.

If any of their clients are found to have been involved in money laundering activities and they fail to report this to the Investigation Bureau under the Ministry of Justice, the financial institutions or any of the firms and store operators covered by the legislation can be punished with fines of up to NT$1 million (US$31,500).

The amendment was brought up to prevent cases such as the Mega Bank New York branch being fined US$180 million by the New York State Department of Financial Services in August for violating the state’s anti-money laundering laws, after the bank failed to explain alleged violations by its Panama branch of money laundering laws and involvement in other suspicious transactions.

The law revision also stipulates that any financial institution that avoids, refuses or interferes with regular checks for acts of money laundering will be punished with fines ranging from NT$500,000 to NT$5 million.

The enforcement of the revised act will begin in June next year at the earliest, according to the Legislative Yuan.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel
A proposed amendment to the Money Laundering Control Act was passed by the Legislative Yuan Friday, under which more professions are required to report to the authorities any suspicious financial transactions by their clients.

Under the revised act, in addition to financial institutions, jewelry store operators, land registration agents, real estate brokers, practicing lawyers and accountants are all obliged to make such reports.

If any of their clients are found to have been involved in money laundering activities and they fail to report this to the Investigation Bureau under the Ministry of Justice, the financial institutions or any of the firms and store operators covered by the legislation can be punished with fines of up to NT$1 million (US$31,500).

The amendment was brought up to prevent cases such as the Mega Bank New York branch being fined US$180 million by the New York State Department of Financial Services in August for violating the state’s anti-money laundering laws, after the bank failed to explain alleged violations by its Panama branch of money laundering laws and involvement in other suspicious transactions.

The law revision also stipulates that any financial institution that avoids, refuses or interferes with regular checks for acts of money laundering will be punished with fines ranging from NT$500,000 to NT$5 million.

The enforcement of the revised act will begin in June next year at the earliest, according to the Legislative Yuan.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel

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