COMMONS

Economic crime inquiry launched

29 March 2018

The Treasury Committee is launches a new inquiry into economic crime.

The inquiry will have two strands:

  1. Anti-money laundering and the sanctions regime. The Committee will examine the scale of money laundering, terrorist financing and sanctions in the UK, the current regulatory and legislative landscape, and how individuals, firms and the wider economy have been impacted by these regimes and the implementation of them.
  2. Consumers and economic crime. The Committee will scrutinise the scale and nature of economic crime faced by consumers, the effectiveness of financial institutions in combatting economic crime, and the security of consumer’s data.

The Committee is now welcoming written evidence. Witnesses for oral evidence sessions will be announced in due course.

Chair's comments

Commenting on the launch of the inquiry, Rt Hon. Nicky Morgan MP, Chair of the Treasury Committee, said:

"Given the threats that face the UK, the effectiveness of the regimes that we use to protect our financial system from misuse have never been more important.

It has been claimed that the UK, particularly the London property market, is becoming a destination of choice to launder the proceeds of overseas crime and corruption – so-called ‘dirty money’. One estimate suggests that up to £4.4 billion worth of UK properties may have been bought with suspicious wealth.

As part of our inquiry, the Treasury Committee will examine the UK’s role in international efforts to tackle money laundering and terrorist financing and implement sanctions.

We will also look at economic crime at the consumer level, including fraud and scams. As online banking and payments have become more prevalent, there are now more opportunities for fraudulent activity.

The ONS has estimated that there were 3.2 million fraud incidents for the year ending September 2017. As millions of customers are exposed to the risk of economic crime, we’ll scrutinise the response of the Treasury, its associated bodies and the regulators, and explore the role that consumer education can play."

Further information

Image: iStockphoto

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