UK money laundering: How they get away with it

Schools and universities are small, unwitting elements of a growing industry of “gatekeepers” to the UK for foreign money launderers.

Solicitors, estate agents and financial advisers are seen as far bigger culprits letting dirty money enter the UK system. Currently – amid concerns about a visit next year to the UK from the international anti money laundering body, the Financial Action Task Force – hundreds of law firms across the country are undergoing checks from their regulator into how much care they take to keep out the criminals.

Sources say the FATF has become increasingly concerned about the rising number of legal actions being taken in London by foreign nationals, who have become a huge source of earnings, particularly for big City law firms. Fraud experts say much of this action is funded by laundered money from countries such as Russia and the former Soviet republics. Analysts expect the inspectors from the Solicitors Regulation Authority to run into stonewalling as lawyers claim professional client privilege to keep suspicions about their client’s secret.

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