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Take a cross-sectoral approach to tackling economic crime

Author: ICAEW Insights

Published: 22 Apr 2022

A new course by PaC and IBE aims to get the professions talking about how to deal with money laundering, modern slavery and other eocnomic crime risks.

Professionals of all kinds must be acutely aware of any signs of bribery, corruption, money laundering and modern slavery. Vigilance is particularly important in the current climate, with rising costs increasing the likelihood of modern slavery practices, and the greater focus on money laundering and economic crime in the light of recent sanctions on Russia-linked businesses and individuals. 

Professionals against Corruption (PaC), formed in 2016 to enable cross-sectoral collaboration when it comes to tackling forms of corruption, has put together a course as part of its partnership with the Institute of Business Ethics (IBE) to address this.

Aimed solely at ICAEW, RICS and Law Society members, the course follows a case study based on the various stages that real estate, accountancy and legal go through as part of a property transaction. 

It asks attendees to reflect on their due diligence processes, duties and obligations and ability to spot red flags. Attendees need to consider whether this is a property transaction that they would want to go through with as professionals.

Ultimately, it brings together advisers from accounting, legal and real estate to discuss these issues and share ideas, encouraging more effective collaboration between those professions. 

“Professionals in the accountancy, legal and real estate sectors need to be alert to indications of potential money laundering," says David Gomez, ICAEW’s Senior Lead, Ethics. “A collaborative approach helps identify emerging risks and patterns of criminal activity, and contributes to the overall fight against economic crime.”

Participants should develop a better understanding of the other professions’ due diligence processes, including the types of checks conducted on new and existing clients. The discussion will touch on any overlaps that might exist in the current procedures, focusing on what information could be shared and how. 

On the other hand, participants will be able to discuss what client information has to be treated confidentially by each profession and must not be shared.

The case study includes examples of situations and behaviours that might be useful to consider when assessing the ethics risks of a transaction. During the training, participants will be able to discuss and reflect on these red flags.

The course, Getting it right: cross-profession ethics training course for professional advisers, will run five times across the year and is free for members of ICAEW, RICS and the Law Society: 

Wednesday 4 May 2022 (9:30-12:30)
Thursday 16 June 2022 (9:30-12:30)
Thursday 15 September 2022 (14:00-17:00)
Monday 3 October 2022 (14:00-17:00)
Friday 11 November 2022 (9:30-12:30)

Company reform and economic crime

The Economic Crime Act 2022 became law in March and part two of the bill is incoming. From risks to required changes, we explore key considerations for accountants on the issue.

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