FIU- Financial Intelligence Unit: lawyer explains
Based on the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Prevention) Act (FI), FIU Netherlands is the designated organization where unusual transactions must be reported. FIU Netherlands tries to uncover unusual transactions that are linked to money laundering or other crimes. FIU Netherlands forwards suspicious transactions to other enforcement and investigation services.
Reporting an unusual transaction: how does that work?
A report can be submitted digitally, via the FIU Netherlands portal. Please note: deliberately not reporting (reporting failure) is an economic offense in itself. It is the reason why many reporting groups report when in doubt.
Many service providers fall under the scope of the Wwft, including (but certainly not limited to) accountants, advisers, tax advisers, banks, notaries, appraisers, brokers, trust offices, etc. There is a duty of confidentiality with regard to the notification and there is also a training obligation: your employees must have sufficient knowledge of the Wwft.
When is there an unusual transaction?
This depends on so-called reporting indicators, which in turn depends on the service provider / reporting group. There are subjective indicators and objective indicators. The best-known objective indicator is the cash transaction of EUR 10,000. If the transaction meets one or more indicators, then reporting is required. It must also be reported if there is (only) an intended transaction.
What about the blacklist or the higher money laundering risk?
There is a list of risk countries, which is also referred to as the “black list”. Three times a year the Financial Action Task Force draws up a list of countries that do not meet their obligations sufficiently. There is also a list of states that have a higher risk of money laundering or terrorist financing, as designated by the European Commission.
To report or not to report? Lawyer on the duty to report
The Wwft is extensive and not always easy to understand. The consequences of the Wwft are far-reaching. For example, there may be a prohibition on entering into a business relationship. In addition, there is a duty to report, a duty of confidentiality and far-reaching internal obligations regarding customer due diligence and the monitoring of unusual transactions. The fines that can be imposed are not harsh. If you have any questions about the obligation to report or about the Wwft, do not hesitate to contact Fennek advocaten.