Home Secretary Suella Braverman announced the second part of the UK Government’s economic crime plan at the Economic Crime Congress this week.
The three-year plan, which was delayed by nine months, allows the Government, the law enforcement and private sector to collaborate and crack down on money laundering, kleptocracy and sanctions evasion.
The UK Government will aim to recruit 475 new financial crime investigators and invest £100 million into new technology, including data analytics. With this investment, the Government anticipates an additional recovery of £1 billion in criminal assets over the next 10 years.
The plan is backed by a further £400 million in additional investment to tackle economic crime over the Spending Review Period. £200 million will come from the Government itself and the rest from the Economic Crime (Anti-Money Laundering) Levy raised from the private sector.
A new multi-agency “crypto cell” is also being established, where law enforcement and regulators will together identify, seize, and store illicit cryptocurrency assets.
The National Crime Agency’s Combatting Kleptocracy Cell will also expand as a bolstered response to sanctions against Russia and others that are evading these sanctions.
Braverman commented: “Economic crime undermines the integrity of our financial system and weakens our national security. Through robust legislation and a strengthened law enforcement response, we’ve come a long way in cracking down on dirty money, but this plan helps us go further. Backed by our partnership with the private sector, we have the resources and expertise we need to identify criminal networks and confiscate the proceeds of their illicit activities.”
Bob Wigley, chair of UK Finance said: “Partnerships between the private sector, law enforcement, regulators and government are vitally important. Through this new plan we will continue to work together to ensure our collective system more effectively combats all forms of economic crime.”
Sarah Pritchard, executive director of markets at the FCA, said: “Our increasingly proactive, assertive and data-led approach enables us to act at pace to reduce and prevent financial crime. We look forward to continuing the work that the Economic Crime Plan sets out over the next three years. Through the Office for Professional Body Anti-Money Laundering Supervision (OPBAS), we are enhancing the UK’s ability to tackle professional enablers by driving up the effectiveness of professional body supervisors, and working to develop better information and intelligence sharing across the system.”