British AML Expert Convicted of Money Laundering

A former compliance expert who chaired the Association of UK Payment Institutions for 14 years has been been convicted of laundering the proceeds of an £850,000 investment scam, the Financial Timesreported Wednesday.

A jury at Southwark Crown Court convicted Dominic James Edward Thorncroft of one count of money laundering, one count of breaching money laundering regulations and four counts of retaining a wrongful credit, the FT said. During his chairmanship of the money remittance sector association, Thorncroft represented himself as an anti-money laundering (AML) expert while the lobbying group provided compliance training to MPs and financial regulators, the newspaper reported.

A 2016 Metropolitan Police investigation linked Thorncroft and his money service bureau business to a 2014 scheme that transferred the illicit proceeds of an investment fraud to Hong Kong and China. Prosecutors contend that Thorncroft knew or suspected that the funds processed through his business’ bank accounts were the proceeds of a fraud but still failed to alert the authorities, the FT said.

Thorncroft is not accused of taking part in the fraud.

“However his actions have allowed £850,000 defrauded from 60 individuals to be dispersed across the world,” Stephane Pendered, prosecutor for the specialist fraud division of the Crown Prosecution Service, said in a statement cited by the FT. “Thorncroft promoted himself as an anti-money laundering expert but failed to live up to the standards he set for others.”

Thorncroft is slated to be sentenced next month.


June 24, 2021, published on Financial Times

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