The Edmonton ACAMS Sub-Chapter held their second event on Monday May 30, 2011. Inspector Greg Preston from the Edmonton Police Service (EPS) gave a presentation on money laundering and asset forfeiture. Inspector Preston has extensive experience in policing. He is currently in charge of the EPS Organized Crime Branch. He has represented the larger police community by acting as legal counsel representing the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police before the Supreme Court of Canada on five separate occasions.
Inspector Preston provided a law enforcement perspective on money laundering. He discussed the various types of organized crime groups in operation and criminal activities being seen locally and throughout Canada (e.g., drugs, arms, human trafficking, telemarketing, gangs, mortgage fraud, counterfeit cheques/debit/credit card fraud, etc.). In addition, he covered the following areas:
- Stages of money laundering, common money laundering activities, specific money laundering activities (e.g., Casinos, Pre-paid gift cards, currency exchanges, overloaded credit cards, etc.)
- Money laundering and FINTRAC reporting gaps (e.g., vehicles, watches/jewelry/artwork/bail and legal retainers, etc.)
- Emerging money laundering techniques such as online gaming transfers and mobile banking (e.g., cell phone to cell phone transfers)
- Identified a few anti-money laundering techniques and new techniques hoping to be passed in legislation (e.g., KYC, ask questions, watch the nature of the transactions, FIs to view the property they are financing to ensure value (i.e., real estate and farms), cash received is the cash back (i.e., cash money in/cash money out—Ontario rules for lawyers, etc.)
- Disgorging profits and making crime expensive by discussing the Victims Restitution and Compensation Payment Act and identifying the two areas: (a) Instruments of illegal activity (instruments of crime); (b) Property acquired by an illegal act (proceeds of crime)
- Civil forfeiture seizures for the EPS Organized Crime Branch for 2010—identified the numbers and dollar amount (e.g., cash, vehicles, jewelry, properties)
A total of 34 AML professionals attended the event. The attendees were from law enforcement (members of the RCMP from Edmonton and Calgary), Government of Alberta, professional services firms, MSBs, financial institutions, and private investigators.
Attendees were asked to complete evaluation forms. The evaluations completed indicated the event was a success with the majority rating the event as excellent and informative.
We are planning the next event in Edmonton to occur in October 2011.