The UK Government has announced the launch of The Office for Professional Body Anti-Money Laundering Supervision (OPBAS) as the new anti-money laundering watchdog.
The OPBAS is based within the FCA and will monitor the activities of the UK’s 22 Anti-Money Laundering (AML) supervisors from the accountancy and legal professional bodies, working with them to ensure the AMLs reach the standards set out in the Money Laundering Regulations 2017.
The Oversight of Professional Body Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorist Financing Supervision Regulations 2017 came into force on the 18 January 2017 and it these regulations that underpin the work of OPBAS who will monitor the supervisory professional bodies but not directly monitor the firms that they supervise.
John Glen, MP for Salisbury and Economic Secretary to the Treasury said;
This new watchdog will deepen the government’s partnership with the private sector as we work together to tackle illicit finance whilst minimising the burdens on legitimate businesses. This sends a clear message to criminals and terrorists that their dirty money is not welcome here.