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Police warning on laundering law threat

The FSA&#39s lack of experience in investigating money-laundering crimes could result in prosecutions being thrown out of court, according to the head of the Metropolitan Police money laundering team.

Detective Inspector Cliff Knuckey told the Pima conference that if the FSA stumbles across any primary money laundering offences he is concerned they may violate a suspect&#39s rights, jeopardising any future criminal case.

Primary offences are those where an individual is deliberately involved in an attempt to launder the proceeds of crime. After N2, the FSA will have responsibility for secondary offences which involve negligence on the behalf of a financial institution while DI Knuckey&#39s team is responsible for investig-ating any primary offences.

Knuckey said it is possible the FSA will come across evidence of primary offences in its audits of authorised companies and, because of its lack of experience in investigating these type of cases, may violate someone&#39s rights.

He said: “I would not want any prosecutions undermined because the evidence initially gathered was flawed. I hope the rights of a professional business service provider are taken into account if and when evidence is collected.”

FSA spokesman Patrick Humphris says: “We think we are pretty ready and we think it is pretty delineated where our responsibilities lie. We have a great deal of experience in criminal prosecutions.”

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