In its anual report, published today, MONEYVAL reports that the countries it evaluates have broadly improved their technical compliance with international standards by enacting and reforming laws and regulations, in particular in the prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing offences.
However, MONEYVAL concludes that law enforcement and prosecutors need to do more in achieving serious money laundering convictions and in producing confiscation orders that have a deterrent effect in offences generating major proceeds. The Committee also stresses that there are still very few convictions of those third parties who launder proceeds on behalf of organised crime.
“Last week, the G8 leaders publicly committed to 8 principles for fighting money laundering and tax evasion, and to report on the action they take. All European states should follow these principles. In a Europe emerging from a global financial crisis, it is more important than ever that financial institutions do not accept clients or transactions unless they know who they are dealing with and the source of the funds that they are handling”, said the Chair of MONEYVAL, Anton Bartolo.
“If our financial institutions are tainted by funds which are proceeds of crime, then they pose risks to their own reputations, the reputations of their countries, and to the global financial system, which relies so much on confidence in our financial institutions”, he stressed.
MONEYVAL's latest report evaluates measures taken by Poland to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. The report sets out an analysis of the implementation of international and European standards. Poland identified money laundering and terrorist financing as one of the strategic priorities of its two National Programs for counteracting and combating organised crime and for combating terrorism, for the years 2012–16.
Technical deficiencies identified in the third round report on criminalisation of money laundering have not yet been addressed. The number of investigations and prosecutions for money laundering offences appears low, compared to the level of funds-generating crime. The evaluators considered there still remains an insufficiently proactive approach to money laundering investigation by law enforcement. The confiscation regime remains incomplete and the level of final confiscations also appears low.
Following the MONEYVAL recommendation in its third round evaluation, Poland introduced into its Penal Code an independent, autonomous offence of terrorist financing. Nevertheless, the offence is still not fully in line with international standards. While Poland has a broadly sound legal structure for preventive standards, the legislative provisions dealing with customer due diligence requirements are still not entirely in line with international standards. In particular, there is no clear requirement to identify beneficial owners and to verify the customers’ identities from reliable and independent sources. Additionally, Polish law still does not require adequate transparency of legal persons.