FraudTrack highlights money laundering rise


money-launderingThe total value and number of reported cases of money laundering in the UK has surged over the past year, according to the findings of BDO’s FraudTrack research.

The report, which examines all reported fraud cases over £50,000 in the UK, found that the total value of reported money laundering related to fraud offences has risen to £288m in 2013, up from £70m in 2012.

The actual number of reported money laundering cases has also risen from 33 in 2012 to 39 in 2013. One of the largest cases of reported money laundering in Hampshire related to the discovery of £495,000 of cash in a lorry at Portsmouth continental ferry terminal destined for Bilbao, Spain.

In terms of sectors, fraud in the financial services industry now accounts for 51 per cent of all reported fraud in the UK by value and more than 25 per cent by number of reported cases.

BDO’s FraudTrack found that while the total amount of fraud has fallen from £1.37bn in 2012 to £1.05bn in 2013, the total value of financial services fraud has risen from £473m in 2012 to £532m in 2013, with the number of frauds in the sector rising from 122 in 2012 to 132 in 2013.

Mike Mason, director of forensic accounting at BDO in Southampton, said: “At face value, fraud in the financial services sector would appear to be on the march, however, we need to give this context.

We firmly believe that the ever increasing regulatory and compliance burden imposed on financial services firms by the Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority means that fraud which historically may not have been reported, but rather dealt with privately in-house, is now coming out driven by a growing demand for transparency.”



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