FSA fines company over money laundering controls failures

FSA fines company over money laundering controls failures


Yesterday, the FSA hit Sindicatum Holdings Limited (SHL) with a £49,000 fine, and gave an additional fine of £17,500 to Michael Wheelhouse, as the company’s money laundering reporting officer. 

The fine comes after the FSA found inadequate anti-money laundering systems and controls in use for verifying and recording clients’ identities.  


The FSA found that Sindicatum Holdings Limited hadn’t implemented appropriate procedures for verifying the identity of its clients. Sufficient records had not been kept of clients’ identities and Mr Wheelhouse had not taken reasonable steps to implement procedures for controlling money laundering risk.


This case marks the first instance where the FSA has fined a money laundering reporting officer.


Head of retail enforcement at the FSA, William Amos, stated: "It is vital to the integrity of the UK’s financial markets that regulated firms are not used by criminals to launder money.  Senior management must implement and follow procedures that meet our requirements so that the risks their firms face are properly managed.”

He went on to say: "This fine is a warning to firms and individuals about the importance of complying with our rules in this area and we will not hesitate to clamp down on failures, where necessary."

Although the FSA found no evidence of money laundering at SHL, it stated that the penalty would have been “significantly larger” if it weren’t for the limited financial resources of the firm and its ability to pay the fine.

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