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IoM Strengthens Laws Against Financial Crime

by Jason Gorringe, Lowtax.net, London
19 December, 2017

The Isle of Man's Cabinet Office has released draft legislation and a consultation document aimed at strengthening the island's reputation as a responsible and well-regulated international business center.

The Anti-Money Laundering and Other Financial Crime (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2017, released earlier this week, proposes enhancements to the Isle of Man's compliance with global standards on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism.

The Bill also acts on recommendations of the Council of Europe's Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures and the Financing of Terrorism - MONEYVAL - to strengthen the Isle of Man's regulatory framework and further protect it from financial crime.

Clare Bettison, Member of the House of Keys for Home Affairs, said: "The Isle of Man takes its responsibilities as an international business center very seriously. The improvements outlined in the consultation document and the accompanying draft Bill are clear evidence of our commitment to making the changes recommended by MONEYVAL's committee of experts. I would encourage members of the public and business community to submit their views via the government consultation."

The Bill proposes new measures aimed at trustees acting in a personal capacity (non-professional trustees) and foreign trustees, including requirements to keep records. There are additional record-keeping requirements for foundations and changes clarifying the powers of the Companies Registrar to examine and investigate relevant documents filed with the Registry.

The proposed legislation includes a higher level of financial sanctions for failing to grant law enforcement authorities timely access to information. It also makes it explicit that where parts of a dishonesty offense such as theft or forgery were committed abroad, these can be prosecuted in a Manx court. It would not matter if offenders were operating from abroad, as they would be caught by the legislation.

Interested parties are invited to give their feedback through the Government's consultation hub.

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