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Financial Authorities Look Into Money Laundering Suspicions After Investigation

Financial Authorities Look Into Money Laundering Suspicions After Investigation

Posted March. 07, 2004 22:31,   


The financial information authority is planning to investigate the financial institutions that have failed to report their business transactions under suspicion of money laundering after the prosecutor’s investigation on political fund raising.

According to MOFE (Ministry of Finance and Economy) on March 7, the FIU (Financial Intelligence Unit), a division of MOFE, is considering a plan to investigate the involved financial institutions once the prosecutor reports the contents of the transactions subjected to money laundering.

The “Anti-Money Laundering Bill” requires the financial institution to report to the FIU immediately if they are presumed to be involved in money laundering with a transaction of over $20 million ($50 million until last year before the amendment). In addition, in their attempt to avoid disclosure, cases where the institution is suspected of finely dividing their transactions to pass the suggested amount are also required to be reported.

The bill calls for “an up to one year prison term or a $5 million penalty” for financial institutions that provide false reports and levies “a maximum $5 million negligence fine” for those who failed to report altogether.

“Suspicious transactions” that have been registered with the FIU have significantly increased since last year to 1744 cases. However, in 2002 during the period of heavy illegal political fundraising transactions, it only totaled 262 cases.

Jong sik Kong kong@donga.com