• Sun
  • Dec 21, 2014
  • Updated: 4:05pm

Anti-Money Laundering

US monitor says HSBC’s anti-money-laundering fixes leave ‘much work to be done’

HSBC was once described by a Mexican drug lord as 'the place to launder money' given the banking giant's lax controls. Photo: Reuters

HSBC has made some progress in improving its anti-money laundering programme, as required by a 2012 deferred prosecution agreement with the US Justice Department, but there remains “much work to be done”, federal prosecutors said in a court filing on Tuesday.

Wednesday, 2 April, 2014, 5:08pm

Liberty Reserve founder among seven charged over US$6b laundering scam

Preet Bharara, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, describes charges against Costa Rica-based Liberty Reserve, one of the worlds largest digital currency companies. Photo: Reuters

The founder of an online currency transfer business was indicted in the United States along with six other people in a US$6 billion money-laundering scheme described as "staggering" in its scope, authorities said yesterday.

29 May 2013 - 2:50am 1 comment

Against proposed dirty money law

Kevin Zervos. Photo: Nora Tam

Director of Public Prosecutions Kevin Zervos advocates the implementation of a civil forfeiture law that would allow the government to seize property before a criminal conviction or even criminal proceedings take place. He claims that this would make it easier to fight money laundering.

29 Apr 2013 - 2:06am

HKMA doubles the guard against money laundering

The HKMA plans to double the size of its anti-money laundering team. Photo: Sam Tsang

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority will double its money-laundering investigative team to check for any failure by banks in their control systems to prevent illicit cash flows.

26 Apr 2013 - 5:34am

Chief Hong Kong prosecutor wants easier way to seize dirty cash

Kevin Zervos

Director of Public Prosecutions Kevin Zervos said the fact that prosecutors need a criminal conviction before they can apply for a confiscation order is hampering their efforts.

22 Apr 2013 - 8:34am 6 comments

Our free trade demands justice

Custom officers inspect the luggages of people at Lok Ma Chau. The recent absurd situation over baby milk powder is the result of barriers to free trade. Photo: Edward Wong

Influential groups in Hong Kong seem to have less and less idea of why the territory exists as a separate entity, what makes it distinct and what makes it thrive, for reasons that are hard to replicate elsewhere. 

7 Apr 2013 - 1:42am 5 comments

Tough money laundering law

It might surprise many that in Hong Kong you can be convicted of the offence if you did not know or believe that the money was the proceeds of an offence - in fact, even if you believed it was not, if the court finds (objectively) reasonable grounds for believing it was.

31 Mar 2013 - 2:08am 1 comment

The wrongs of the right-thinking approach to law

Kevin Zervos, Director of Public Prosecutions. Photo: Nora Tam

Let's split a few hairs here. Note that Mr Zervos does not say the accused knew that he or she was dealing in the proceeds of serious crime, only that he or she knew the facts and circumstances that would lead a right-thinking member of the community to believe so.

28 Mar 2013 - 5:52am 18 comments

Justice ill-served by prosecutions in money-laundering schemes

Selected banks in the US, including HSBC and Standard Chartered, were charged for money laundering. Photo: Edward Wong

It is a grotesque injustice that the small cogs in alleged money laundering schemes are now not only being prosecuted, but are given sentences greater than almost any ever imposed on the biggest fraudsters Hong Kong has ever known.

24 Mar 2013 - 4:49am 11 comments

Law that jailed cash mule is still an ass, whenever it was passed

Director of Public Prosecutions Kevin Zervos. Photo: Nora Tam

Let's deal with the excuses that Mr Zervos has dished out to us for a rank miscarriage of justice in sending a little old lady to jail for 10 years on a grossly misconceived charge of money laundering.

24 Mar 2013 - 4:49am 9 comments

Money laundering a serious problem

Kevin Zervos, Director of Public Prosecutions at Department of Justice. Photo: K. Y. Cheng

The money laundering offence provision was enacted by the legislature some time ago in 1995, and since then it has been the subject of extensive judicial scrutiny.

21 Mar 2013 - 2:50am 3 comments

Top lawyers clash over fairness of city's anti-money laundering laws

Kevin Zervos, Director of Public Prosecutions. Photo: Nora Tam

The Director of Public Prosecutions and one of the city's leading criminal lawyers have offered conflicting views on tough anti-money laundering laws, after two cases involving billions of dollars ended with the accused sentenced to at least 10 years in jail each.

18 Mar 2013 - 4:45am 9 comments

Insurers feel the pain of anti-laundering law

Chan Kin-por

Insurers have complained that the anti-money laundering law introduced a year ago puts too big a burden on their shoulders. Some of the conditions should be changed or removed because they had gone too far and made life tough for insurers, said insurance sector legislator Chan Kin-por.

18 Mar 2013 - 4:44am

Rule of law suffers when Hong Kong targets money laundering

HSBC has been convicted in the media of money laundering in Mexico because it handled money that the US Drug Enforcement Agency has made the world believe comes from drug trafficking, although the DEA brought no such charges. Photo: Reuters

Hong Kong's efforts to tackle money laundering are under increasing strain due to a surge in the number of suspicious transactions being reported and concerns over a brain drain of investigators to the private sector.

24 Feb 2013 - 1:50am 5 comments

Letters to the Editor, February 18, 2013

Chinese human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng. Photo: AP

It is common for employees in Hong Kong to work long hours. There appears to be no change in this state of affairs despite efforts by the government to change the working culture.

18 Feb 2013 - 1:55am 1 comment