Singapore’s central bank is raising its guard against money launderers increasingly using onshore shell companies to mask their transactions, a senior official said.
Valerie Tay, who heads the anti-money laundering department at the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said banks had closed accounts of several onshore shell companies over the past year, after detecting unlawful transactions.
“When we looked deeper into the risks, we realized that while criminals may still be using offshore companies, actually they have shifted to using onshore companies to evade detection,” Tay told Reuters in an interview, adding that this trend was also noticed in other financial centers.
“And that’s when we started to be concerned. Because when the modus operandi of criminals shifts to evade detection and the industry isn’t vigilant enough, the criminals can get their way,” she said.
Read the original article here: reuters.com
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