£3.2 million in UK-HMRC money laundering penalties - £1.4 million being the most significant
HMRC has published details on hundreds of businesses who have been fined for breaching anti-money laundering rules.
Hundreds of businesses fined a total of £3.2 million for breaching anti-money laundering rules have been named by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
The 240 supervised businesses named today were fined between 1 July and 31 December 2022 by HMRC for breaching Money Laundering Regulations aimed at preventing criminals from exploiting illicit cash.
- Xpress Money Services Ltd, based in London, was hit with a large fine of £1.4 million for
- failing to carry out risk assessments,
- not having appropriate anti-money laundering controls, and
- failing to conduct proper due diligence checks.
HMRC's work with other enforcement agencies and government departments to tackle economic crime and crack down on breaches is working to drive non-compliant firms out of business. This means that the number of money service businesses has fallen by around a third from 1,508 in 2020 to 1,049 in 2023, and the number of money service business agents has reduced from 35,507 to 30,217 in the same period.
Nick Sharp, HMRC's Deputy Director of Economic Crime, Fraud Investigation Service, said:
- Money laundering is not a victimless crime. We are here to help businesses protect themselves from criminal attacks and will continue to tackle the minority of businesses which do not comply with the Money Laundering Regulations.
- Serious and organised crime costs the UK billions of pounds every year and our anti-money laundering supervision is a vital tool in combatting that.
In addition to the named businesses, another 179 companies received smaller fines totalling more than £200,000 for rule breaches.
Money service businesses provide vital services to the community, offering currency exchange, money transmission and cheque cashing. However, they can be exploited by criminals to launder the proceeds of crime, so must have a robust risk assessment and policies, controls, and procedures to prevent this.
HMRC supervises tens of thousands of businesses across the UK under Money Laundering Regulations, and helps these firms protect themselves from criminals who seek to launder cash or finance terrorism.
Guidance for money service businesses on anti-money laundering rules is available on GOV.UK. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/anti-money-laundering-guidance-for-money-service-businesses
A full list of the named companies who have received fines or suspensions under these regulations is available on GOV.UK:
- Suspension and cancellation of anti-money laundering supervision list https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/suspension-and-cancellation-of-anti-money-laundering-supervision
- Businesses not complying with money laundering regulations https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/businesses-not-complying-with-money-laundering-regulations-in-2018-to-2019
Number of named businesses by UK nation and English region
Devolved nation or English region Number of named businesses fined for breaches between 1 July 2022 to 31 December 2022
- Northern Ireland-12
- Greater London-86
- South East-28
- North West-26
- East of England-23
- West Midlands-17
- North East-15
- East Midlands-13
- South West-11
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