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Cayman Finance slams article

| 25/03/2015 | 0 Comments
CNS Business

Jude Scott, CEO Cayman Finance

(CNS Business): Cayman Finance CEO Jude Scott is firing back against a recent article about the US Department of State Report, listing the Cayman Islands as a “country of primary concern” for money laundering and financial crimes. Scott stated ComplianceAid, an AML/CFT consulting firm, took the report out of context for opportunistic reasons, in an article written by the group earlier this week. Scott expressed his disappointment on behalf of the financial services industry in a release sent to CNS Business.

“It appears that ComplianceAid has chosen to sensationalize media reports to negatively focus on Caribbean countries for the purpose of increasing attendance at ComplianceAid’s upcoming conference in Miami,” he said.

Scott explained the article ComplianceAid wrote took the information from the 2015 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report out of context and implied there was primarily a problem in the Caribbean. The Cayman Finance CEO pointed out the report also listed 50 plus countries around the world. Seven Caribbean countries were included in the list.

“This list of countries actually included all 8 of the G8 countries in the same category as the Cayman Islands and other Caribbean countries. The article by ComplianceAid was deceptive at best and this type of behavior intentionally, or unintentionally, by conference promoters should never be encouraged,” he added.

The US Department of State Report acknowledges the Cayman Islands as a well-developed offshore financial center that provides a range of services, but also urges the Cayman Island’s Government to pay greater attention to risks and better supervise all non-profit sectors, which the report said, “is at a risk of being used to launder fraud and drug related acquired money.”

Scott explained according to the actual report, a government can have comprehensive AML (Anti-Money Laundering) laws on its books and conduct aggressive AML enforcement efforts, but still be classified a “primary concern” or “major money laundering” jurisdiction. It’s a label the Cayman Island’s Government called misleading.

“Economies that attract funds globally are vulnerable to money laundering activity because the volume and complexity of the available financial options may make criminals believe they may more easily hide their funds,” he explained. Scott added, “The success of the Cayman Islands as a leading International Financial Centre with strong and sophisticated Banking and other Financial Industry Services seems to have contributed to Cayman’s continued inclusion on the lists.”

The Cayman Finance CEO explained that the recent report is not based on an assessment of the country or the jurisdiction’s legal framework to combat money laundering, or any role in the terrorist financing problem.

“The Cayman Islands continues to perform very strongly when examined for the effectiveness of programs to detect and prevent money laundering and terrorist financing, among other things, and we continue to be surprised that the country continues to be included in the classification of a country of “primary concern,” Scott reassured in the release.

He also confirmed that Cayman Finance is committed to working in conjunction with the Cayman Islands Government and the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority, to ensure that officials with the US Department of State are provided with accurate information on the anti-money laundering regime maintained in the Cayman Islands.

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