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AUSTRAC takes action against Westpac over 'systemic non-compliance'

Lachlan Maddock
— 1 minute read

BREAKING AUSTRAC has applied for civil penalty orders against Westpac over 23 million contraventions of money laundering laws. 

AUSTRAC alleges Westpac breached the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006 (AML/CTF Act) by failing to conduct due diligence on correspondent banks with access to its banking environnment.

AUSTRAC also alleges that Westpac failed to report over 19.5 million International Funds Transfer Instructions (IFTIs) to AUSTRAC over the course of five years for transfers both into and out of Australia, and failed to carry out appropriate customer due diligence on transactions to the Philippines and South East Asia that have known financial indicators relating to potential child exploitation risks. 

"These AML/CTF laws are in place to protect Australia's financial system, businesses and the community from criminal exploitation. Serious and systemic non-compliance leaves our financial system open to being exploited by criminals," said AUSTRAC CEO Nicole Rose. 

"We have been, and will continue to work with Westpac during these proceedings to strengthen their AML/CTF processes and frameworks."

 

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AUSTRAC takes action against Westpac over 'systemic non-compliance'
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