The Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Act 2009 prescribes measures to prevent money laundering and the financing of terrorism.
The purpose of the Act is to, among other things, provide for unlawful proceeds of all serious offences to be identified, traced, frozen, seized and forfeited. All citizens of Guyana have a moral obligation to assist in deterring and preventing of money laundering and the financing of terrorism. The AML/CFT Act, however, imposes specific obligations on certain agencies/entities.
The following agencies have special roles and obligations under the AML/CFT legislation:
- Reporting Entities (REs)
- Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU)
- Supervisory Authorities (SAs)
- Special Organized Crime Unit (SOCU)
- Director of Public Prosecution (DPP)
- AML/CFT and Proliferation Financing National Co-ordination Committee
- Other competent authorities (Guyana Revenue Authority, Commercial Registry, Deeds Registry, etc.).
Who is a Supervisory Authority?
A Supervisory Authority is a body or organization designated and responsible for regulation and oversight towards ensuring that reporting entities are compliant with the requirements of the AML/CFT Act and its objectives to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.
A Supervisory Authority is authorized by the AMLCFT Act to engage in the following:
- Conduct AMLCFT examinations, training, regulation, and general oversight, of Reporting Entities
- Enter the business premises of a reporting entity to carry out AML/CFT inspections
- Request and receive information relevant to ML and TF from a reporting entity
- Impose sanctions on a reporting entity for failure to comply with AML/CFT obligations
The range of sanctions that a supervisory authority can impose on a reporting entity that breaches its AML/CFT obligations include:
- Issuing written warnings;
- Ordering compliance;
- Ordering regular reports;
- Prohibiting convicted person(s) from employment by the reporting entity;
- Directing reporting entity to remove defaulting officers from its board;
- Recommending to the appropriate licensing authority (where the supervisor is not the licensing authority) suspension, restriction or withdrawal of reporting entity’s license.
- Imposition of fines between five to fifteen million dollars.