The Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), announced this Tuesday that it has issued a AU$252,000 (around $173,000) infringement notice to Compass Global Holdings Pty Ltd.
According to the statement released by the authority, Compass, which specialises in International Money Transfers for all major currencies, failed to report international funds transfers between 2018 and 2019.
AUSTRAC is an Australian government financial intelligence agency. The authority was set up to monitor financial transactions so that it can identify money laundering, organised crime, tax evasion, welfare fraud and terrorism.
AUSTRAC regulates entities such as money transfer dealers, banks and casinos. These entities are required to submit International Funds Transfer Instruction (IFTI) reports to the agency on time, under the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006 (AML/CTF Act).
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AUSTRAC is working with Compass
However, Compass did not do this. As a result, AUSTRAC is working with Compass to address concerns that the systems it has in place to combat money laundering and terrorism financing are lacking.
Commenting on the infringement notice, AUSTRAC Chief Executive Officer, Nicole Rose PSM said: “AUSTRAC is working with Compass, to ensure they understand their compliance obligations. Where businesses don’t comply with the law, AUSTRAC will not hesitate to take action to protect Australia’s financial system and the community from criminal activity.”
Money transfer businesses contribute to a large portion of Australia’s financial system. In the 2018/2019 period, individuals and business reported $60 billion worth of international funds transfer instructions sent and received. These were by people in Australia using a registered money transfer service.
During the same period, approximately 17.3 transactions were reported through Australia’s registered remittance (money transfer) sector. Because of the large contribution that money transfers make, the CEO of the agency also highlighted that the reporting of money coming in and out of Australia is critical for AUSTRAC to detect criminal activity.
“Money laundering funds and enables terrorism and serious organised crime that causes harm to Australians such as human trafficking, drug trafficking, child exploitation and illegal firearm sales,” Rose added.