Bahrain issued Monday an anti-money laundering law, with tough jail sentences and fines of up to BD1 million (BD1=$3.4), reported the Gulf News Tuesday.
The law that came into force under a decree issued by Emir Shaikh Hamad bin Issa al-Khalifa, said the paper, quoting a statement as saying.
"Anyone caught laundering money will face a maximum of seven years in prison and a fine of up to BD1m."
The statement said that punishment of not less than five years imprisonment and a fine not less than BD100,000 shall be enforced in any of the following cases:
1- Should the crime be committed through an organized gang.
2- Should the offender have misused his influence or power to commit the crime.
3- Should the offender have falsely described the money as being generated from a legal source.
The paper added that minister of finance and national economy, Abdulla Saif, is assigned under the decree to lay down policies on prohibiting and combating money laundering.
The new law was recommended by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
Bahrain will be the first Gulf country to undergo GCC/FAFT mutual evaluation on measures to curb money laundering.
The Madrid FATF conference for 2001-2002 took place from October 2 to 6 with the aim of delivering another crack of the whip to the 15 countries deemed 'uncooperative' in the fight against money laundering.
These countries were listed as: the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands, the Cook Islands, Dominica, Israel, Lebanon, Liechtenstein, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Panama, the Philippines, Russia, St. Kitts and Nevis, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
The UAE also said last October that it was preparing to issue a money laundering law within three months – Albawaba.com
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