In a recent expert review completed by Moneyval, Malta has failed the necessary requirements to meet the Anti-money laundering standards and regulations set forth by Moneyval a year ago.
The report stated that the authorities were unable to pursue high level and complex money laundering cases related to financial, bribery and corruption offenses. Fundamental improvements are also needed in regards to confiscating proceeds of financial crime.
A comprehensive 200-page report gives a detailed breakdown of the country’s failures to fight financial crime. As per Moneyval, Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU) is crucial for tackling money laundering terrorism financing cases for the police in Malta. However, the utilization of this source has been very limited by the police.
Economic Crimes Unit Chief Ian Abdilla refused to take accountability for the lack of action taken last year by the police on the Konrad Mizzi report.
According to Moneyval, Malta authorities focus on tax collection, rather than focusing on money laundering elements of the cases. As per this revelation from Moneyval, this raises serious concerns on the competency of the authorities in-charge of monitoring and action on money laundering matters.
Malta’s National Coordinating Committee (NCC) is drawing up a one year plan in collaboration with 20 other Maltese institutions, in order to implement the fifty-eight Moneyval recommendations. A time frame for implementation, resource requirements, including support and expertise, and, where required, an appointed project leader, the government said of implementing each recommendation provided by Moneyval.
Malta had been warned prior to the report that Moneyval would be coming to prepare its report, however it failed to take heed of the warning and did little to nothing to prepare for the report.