| Money Laundering in London
By Paul Cummins FCCA AITI MSc.Multimedia Systems 1 November 2004
The Financial Times reported on 29 October on a report prepared by Marcus Killick, Chairman of the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission, to the effect that failure to regulate operators of shell companies in the UK allowed criminals to hide the proceeds from criminal activity, was making London a haven for money launderers.
In 2003, on http://www.tax-news.com , it was reported that Transparency International under a report prepared by Mr. Killick believed that the scope of the money-laundering problem in the United Kingdom is 'staggeringly large', and that around £18 billion is laundered through the country's banking system each year
At the same time in accountancymagazine.com http://18.104.22.168/accountancy/main.asp?StoryID=5690&Pagetype=45 reported in the following terms:
“ The City of London launders around £18bn in dirty money a year. This is the principal finding in a Transparency International policy report which analyses the extent of money laundering in the UK .
Author Marcus Killick expresses concern about the growth in laundering through London and quality of regulation designed to cope with it.
Clean Money, Dirty Money says that between US$500bn (£300bn) and $1.5 trillion is laundered worldwide every year. This is around 2-5% of global GDP.
The UK figure of £18bn represents 2% of British GDP or a quarter of all revenues from VAT.
Killick points to the string of overseas UK dependent territories which have thriving financial services sectors. He commends Jersey , Guernsey and the Isle of Man for the quality of their anti money laundering rules and adds that they are more sophisticated than those in operation in mainland UK”
The Financial Times article in 29 October 2004 suggested that officials estimate the £25bn is laundered through the whole of the UK each year.
There is a number of graphics on the website http://www.metaphorbusinessgraphics.com in the Money-Laundering section,depicting issues related to money-laundering
According to its website ( http://www.transparency.org ) Transparency International, claims to be the only international non-governmental organisation devoted to combating corruption, brings civil society, business, and governments together in a powerful global coalition.
TI, through its International Secretariat and more than 85 independent national chapters around the world, works at both the national and international level to curb both the supply and demand of corruption. In the international arena, TI raises awareness about the damaging effects of corruption, advocates policy reform, works towards the implementation of multilateral conventions and subsequently monitors compliance by governments, corporations and banks. At the national level, chapters work to increase levels of accountability and transparency, monitoring the performance of key institutions and pressing for necessary reforms in a non-party political manner.
TI does not expose individual cases (that is the work of journalists, many of whom are members of TI chapters). Rather, in an effort to make long-term gains against corruption, TI focuses on prevention and reforming systems.