LEAs register 230 cases under Anti Money Laundering Act

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ISLAMABAD, Jan 29 (APP): The Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) in the
country have registered 230 cases under Anti Money Laundering (AML) Act to
curb sources of funds being used in terrorism.
The number of cases registered under Foreign Exchange Regulation Act
(FERA) was 498. The number of cases registered as Suspicious Transaction Reports (STRs)
from Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) was 116.
A data issued by Interior Division while highlighting the details of
registration of such cases and steps being taken to curb sources of such funds on
Sunday revealed these relevant cases are under investigation in provinces.
The data further revealed that Anti Money Laundering Act 2010 has been enacted,
and, AML Rules, 2008 have also been framed.
The government has signed to International Convention on Suppression
of Financing of Terrorism adopted by General Assembly of the United Nations in its
resolution.
Moreover, in order to strengthen anti-terrorist regime,specially with
a focus to choke terrorists funding sources, amendments in ATA 1997 have been introduced
in March 2013 and in June, 2014 respectively. The basic objective was to make the law
more effective and harmonized with international best practices.
Rules under ATA 1997 for freezing of assets of terrorist have been
framed and are with Law and Justice Division for final vetting.
The government has so far proscribed 62 organizations under provision
of ATA 1997 while State Bank of Pakistan has issued detailed Regulations to all banks, for
strict compliance, regarding anti-money laundering/terrorist financing. These Regulations
are regularly updated by SBP.
Prevention of Electronic Crime Act (PECA) 2016 has been promulgated
which makes collection of funds for terrorist organizations through any information system
or electronic devices in offence.
Similarly, Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) has also been set
up which is now fully functional. FMU is regularly sending
Suspicious Transactions Reports (STR) and Currency Transaction
Reports (CTR) about suspects to various agencies like Federal
Investigation Agency (FIA), Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF), National
Accountability Bureau (NAB), Federal Bureau of Revenue (FBR),
(Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation) to
investigate and take action according to law.
National Action Plan (NAP) had also been chalked out wherein
point No, 6 relates to “Choking financing for terrorist and
terrorist organizations.” NAP is being implemented in letter and
spirit.
The collection of funds, through donation boxes, for different
organizations has been banned. In case of violation, donation boxes
are seized and action under the law is taken by local police.
In terms of AML Act, 2010 reporting entities are legally bound
to send financial intelligence to FMU in all cases where there is a
suspicious that funds are related to terrorist activities or
terrorist organizations.
Moreover, the data said the government has recently shared a
list of persons placed on Schedule 4th of ATA 1997, along with their
Computerized National Identity Card (CNIC) numbers for freezing of
their bank accounts, accordingly the SBP has frozen 4461 bank
accounts of 4th Schedules all over Pakistan.
The SBP has also issued prudential regulations under which
bankers are duty bound to exercise Customer Due Diligence (CDD) and
Know Your Customer (KYC) obligations without fail and report all
Suspicious Transactions to FMU.
Designated/proscribed entities and individuals are prohibited
from opening of bank accounts and/or availing any facility from any
financial institution in Pakistan.
Various capacity building programmes are regularly arranged
for Law Enforcement Agencies to develop and strengthen their skills
regarding investigation of financial crimes while units for
countering of terrorism financing have been established under
counter terrorist departments of the provinces.