Today FCN is publishing a Financial Crime Dashboard for Australia.
Main threats are from fraud, drugs and arms trafficking, corruption, people smuggling, theft and cybercrime, child sexual exploitation, green crimes including wildlife trafficking and illicit tobacco.
Areas for improvement include on prosecutions and convictions for money laundering and foreign corruption as well as on human trafficking, although significant increases in prosecutions and convictions for child sexual exploitation have been reported. in terms of asset recoveries, a target of AUD600 Million was set to be recovered in the period June 2019 – June 2024, which has alreday been achieved demonstrating targeting and prioritising asset recoveries has an effect. Nevertheless, asset recoveries in terms of %age versus estimated proceeds of crime remain low.
Australia was one of the original founder members of the FATF established in 1989 by the G7 plus the EU which added an initial 8 countries, including Australia which also took on the FATF Presidency in 1992 -1993 after the French and Swiss Presidencies and handed over then to the U.K, the Dutch and then the Americans. Australia would lead FATF again in 2014-2015, but in 2015, FATF assessed that whilst Australia had a mature regime for combating ML/TF, certain key areas remain unaddressed, which put Australia into enhanced follow up.
Since then Australia has largely addressed concerns over NPOs, New Technologies, Higher Risk Countries, Responsibilities of LE and Investigative Authorities and Cash Couriers but have yet to prove that sufficient action has been taken on Correspondent Banking, DNFPBs, Transparency of BOs and Supervision which are fundamental areas which were concerns raised and commensurate actions required under the original 40 Recommendations endorsed by Australia and recommended to the rest of the world in 1990.
Leaders in fighting financial crime are those that lead from the front but also lead by example.
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