ECJ fines Romania and Ireland for failures in IFF prevention measures

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has ordered Romania to pay €3 million (US$3.43 million) and Ireland €2 million for failing to follow an EU directive intended to prevent illicit financial flows (IFFs) that lead to money laundering and terrorist financing.

A court statement says that while all EU member states had until June of 2017 to transpose the European Commission’s (EC’s) anti-money laundering directive into national law, Romania and Ireland failed to fulfil their obligations for more than two years.

Disputed fines

Romania and Ireland disputed the fines and maintained they were “not only unjustified, but also disproportionate in the light of the facts of the case and the objective of that type of financial penalty.”

They also complained that the EC failed to provide a detailed statement of reasons, on a case-by-case basis, for its decision to request the imposition of such penalties.

Counter argument

The court countered that the EC is not required to state reasons on a case-by-case basis for its decision to impose financial penalties.

The ECJ also concluded that the fines imposed on Romania and Ireland served the purpose of ensuring that member states transpose directives into their national law.

The ECJ statement on its judgment in this case can be found here.

Categories: Trade Based Financial crimes News

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