The purpose of this paper is to consider recent UK case law on money laundering and consider how the concept of “predicate offence” continues to have a restricting influence on the scope of the relevant legislation. The paper aims to consider recent experience both in the UK and abroad and that notions of what money laundering is and how it can be prosecuted need to quickly evolve to maintain the credibility of the anti‐money laundering environment. This requires a move to accepting that the offence can be proved by reference to the way money is treated that is not dependent on a specified or predicate offence.
The paper presents a review of relevant case law and commentaries thereon. It assesses of new international approaches and analyses specific UK legal provisions relating to money laundering and how they can be amended to be more effective in practice.
Nearly ten years after the advent of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA), a minor but telling amendment to the definition of “criminal property” would help to remove uncertainty as to what constitutes criminal property and increase confidence in the use of the POCA money laundering provisions as an effective weapon against offenders.
The requirement for further legal research and debate is implied.
Practical implications of the paper are the improvement of the effectiveness, and encouraging more use of, the POCA money laundering provisions.
Social implications of the paper are the protection of communities by improved effectiveness of measures taken against those who profit from crime.
This paper encourages debate on the topic of money laundering and knowledge.
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