Financial

Cyber crime and foreign transactions key challenges for FIU

The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) Annual Report for 2015 was tabled in Parliament yesterday, 26 September 2016 by the Honourable Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Mr Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum. The Director of the FIU, Mr Razim Buksh said that the FIU, in partnership with the main Government agencies and the private sector, continued to implement important […]

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September 27, 2016 9:59 am

The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) Annual Report for 2015 was tabled in Parliament yesterday, 26 September 2016 by the Honourable Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Mr Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

The Director of the FIU, Mr Razim Buksh said that the FIU, in partnership with the main Government agencies and the private sector, continued to implement important anti-money laundering (AML) initiatives during 2015.

According to Mr Buksh, the FIU handled the following outputs in 2015:

  1. received and analysed 516 suspicious transaction reports;
  2. disseminated 255 intelligence reports to law enforcement agencies involving 649 individuals and 116 entities for alleged money laundering, tax evasion and proceeds of crime transactions;
  3. conducted 27 due diligence and background checks for Government agencies involving 49 individuals and 40 entities;
  4. provided 191 investigative assistance to law enforcement organisations such as the Fiji Police Force, FRCA and FICAC involving 502 individuals and 264 entities;
  5. issued 7 Alert Notices to financial institutions on 42 people and one body;
  6. issued 11 Directives to financial institutions about 11 individuals and two entities to monitor their transactions;
  7. made 667 enquiries and requests for further information to commercial banks and other financial institutions;
  8. received 579,849 cash transaction reports; 1,029,993 electronic fund transfers reports; and 491 border currency reports;
  9. provided AML and FTR Act training to 270 officers of financial institutions and 84 officers of law enforcement agencies;
  10. enrolled 93 officials at the national AML computer based training centre at the FIU;
  11. issued eight ad-hoc policy advisories to commercial banks and other financial institutions on various customer due diligence and FTR Act requirements.

Mr Buksh said that FIU’s intelligence has led to several successful investigations of criminal activities, apprehension of suspects and the monitoring and tracing of criminal assets.

In 2015, three persons were convicted of money laundering, and three individuals were convicted of border currency offences. The FIU also prevented Fijians from falling victims of transnational fraud and scams such as cyber crime.

Mr Buksh added that profiling complex cybercrime transactions and suspicious foreign remittance transactions were the key challenges for the FIU in 2015.

In 2015, the FIU also continued to strengthen its information exchange mechanism with partner agencies by signing Memoranda of Agreements (MOA) with three foreign FIUs. These MOAs enable the sharing of information relevant to the investigation and prosecution of a money laundering, terrorist financing or other serious offence.

The FIU contributed to critical national AML projects in 2015 such as Fiji’s national risk assessment and the mutual evaluation where Fiji was assessed on its compliance with international AML standards.

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