anti money laundering bill

Irish Government Approves a Bill That Targets Misuse of Cryptocurrencies

As per a report published by the Irish Times, the Government of Ireland has officially agreed to a bill that aims to deploy stricter regulations to address money laundering activities. The bill specifically talks about the misuse of digital currencies in financing terrorism-related activities.

The proposed bill is an amendment to the prevailing criminal justice laws. It gives effect to the European Union’s anti-money laundering order. The bill also gives power to the Garda and the Criminal Asset Bureau to retrieve bank records while investigating cases.

The anti-money laundering bill tightens the laws surrounding transactions with high-risk countries, prohibits the use of digital currencies in terrorist activities, as well as limits the use of prepaid cards.

Charlie Flanagan, Ireland’s Justice Minister, has said that this bill is critical to addressing money laundering activities because such crimes facilitate the sustenance of maleficent activities by terrorists and serious criminals. He added,

“Criminals seek to exploit the EU’s open borders and EU-wide measures are vital for that reason. Ireland strongly supports the provisions in the fifth EU money laundering directive.”

Once the bill is passed, financial institutions such as banks will have to perform strict due diligence for new clients. The development of anonymous safe deposit boxes will also be prohibited.

This news is of interest to the crypto community because Ireland is usually believed to a crypto-friendly nation. In fact, major cryptocurrency exchanges have their European headquarters in Dublin.

In 2018, Ireland partnered with 22 other European nations to establish the European Blockchain Partnership. Not to mention, Ireland’s Blockchain Association aims to position Ireland as a potent force.

Flanagan elaborated on the proposed bill saying that the robust legal framework will put an end to criminal activities. “Those engaging in corruption or money laundering in Ireland will not get away with their crimes,” he added.