In the first of a two-part series, John Binns explains the complex nature of money laundering investigations.
The discovery of a suspected money laundering offence under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA) will often arise from the context of an investigation into its ‘predicate offence’ (the crime that has generated the proceeds).
For example, where a suspect is investigated for bribery, fraud or tax evasion (or even, theoretically at least, more minor offences such as burglary or shoplifting), a perusal of their bank accounts or a search of their home may give rise to evidence of laundering, by themselves or by someone else (perhaps a family member or a business associate).
The level of complexity and sophistication involved in the suspected laundering will vary hugely from one scenario to another, but in most cases the investigation of it will continue to run alongside that of the suspected predicate offences.
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