The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has published a new report that includes a list of risk indicators to help entities identify suspicious activities in the art and antiquities markets, and outlines good practices that countries have taken to address the challenges they face managing risks in these markets.
It outlines typical money laundering methods in the sector and specifically contemplates terrorist financing as a risk faced particularly by those working predominantly in the markets for cultural objects.
The market of art, antiquities and other cultural objects has attracted criminals, organised crime groups and terrorists to launder proceeds of crime and fund their activities according to the report.
It says that criminals seek to exploit the sector’s history of privacy and the use of third-party intermediaries while terrorist groups can use cultural objects from areas where they are active to finance their operations.
The vast majority of market participants do not have a connection to illicit activities, but there are risks associated with these markets and many jurisdictions do not have sufficient awareness and understanding of them.
This results in a lack of investigative resources and expertise, and difficulties with pursuing cross-border investigations.
Indicators and good practice
The report includes a list of risk indicators that can help public and private sector entities identify suspicious activities in the art and antiquities markets, and also highlights the importance of rapidly identifying and tracing cultural objects involved in money laundering or terrorist financing.
It also includes some good practices that countries have taken to address the challenges they face, including the establishment of specialised units and access to relevant databases and cooperation with experts and archaeologists to help identify, trace, investigate and repatriate cultural objects.
The FATF report, Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing in the Art and Antiquities Market, can be downloaded from here.
Categories: Trade Based Financial crimes News