Category Archives: Anti-Money Laundering

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A Cannabis Banking Bill, Sitting on Capitol Hill

Legislation that would pave the way for financial institutions to transact with cannabis-related businesses operating in states that have legalized marijuana (herein “cannabis-related legitimate businesses”) is quickly working its way through the House of Representatives. The SAFE Banking Act of 2019 was introduced in the House by Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) on March 7, 2019. … Continue Reading

To Catch a Terrorist – Innovation, AI, and Public/Private Partnerships in the World of BSA/AML

On the heels of FinCen and Federal Banking Agencies releasing a joint statement “Encouraging Innovative Industry Approaches to AML Compliance,” Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Sigal Mandelker announced a new collaborative era during the American Bankers Association’s Financial Crimes Conference, and emphasized the need for private/governmental working relationships and partnerships in order to combat … Continue Reading

O Canada! What Canada’s Nationwide Legalization of Cannabis Means for American Financial Institutions

Today marks a significant shift in cannabis policy, both domestically and internationally, as Canada becomes the first industrialized nation in the world, and only the second nation overall, to legalize cannabis. This follows the passage of The Cannabis Act in June of this year, which legalized cannabis at all levels of government. With this blessing … Continue Reading

Providing Banking Services to the Legal Marijuana Industry: Mitigating Risks to Maximize Potential Rewards

Since 1996, when California became the first state to legalize marijuana (at the time, for medicinal purposes only), 28 additional states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana to some extent. Public support for legalization continues to rise as more and more jurisdictions loosen their marijuana laws, with 64 percent of Americans in favor … Continue Reading

Western Union to Pay $586 Million in Restitution and Civil Penalties for AML Compliance Failure

On January 19, 2017, Western Union Financial Services, Inc. agreed to pay civil penalties and restitution to victims of fraud totaling $586 million to resolve actions brought by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), Department of Justice (DOJ), and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for violations of the Bank Secrecy Act’s (BSA) anti-money … Continue Reading

Non-Federally Regulated Banks Are Target of Proposed FinCEN Rules

Last month the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) proposed new rules which would require non-federally regulated banks to implement Customer Identification Program (CIP) requirements related to the collection and verification of customer information. Financial institutions have until October 24, 2016, to comment on the proposed rule, which, if adopted, is estimated to … Continue Reading

The “Fifth Pillar” of AML/BSA Compliance FinCEN Issues Final Rule for New Customer Due Diligence Requirements under the Bank Secrecy Act

For years, financial institutions have operated under the maxim that an effective anti-money laundering and Bank Secrecy Act compliance program (collectively “AML”) rests upon four pillars: (1) written policies and procedures; (2) a designated AML compliance officer; (3) independent testing of the institution’s AML program; and (4) implementation of an adequate employee training program. Now … Continue Reading
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