Extending the SAR moratorium period
The most significant change to the anti-money laundering regime made by the Criminal Finances Act 2017 relates to an extension of the moratorium period. Sections 327(1), 328(1) and 329(1) of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 establish the principal money laundering criminal offences that are committed where a person handles criminal property or becomes concerned in facilitating another person’s handling of criminal property. The handling of the property or becoming concerned in facilitating another person’s handling of the criminal property, is known as ‘the prohibited act’. If a prohibited act is committed a person becomes liable to a maximum period of 14 years’ imprisonment. However, in respect of each of the three principal offences, there is a statutory exemption in sections 327(2)(a), 328(2)(a) and 329(2)(a) where a person ‘makes an authorised disclosure under section 338 and (if the disclosure is made before he does the [prohibited] act mentioned in subsection (1)) he has the appropriate consent’.
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