Following on from my post a few days ago about the LIBOR fines being used as a force for good, I have been interested to read about the allocations made over the past decade in Jersey. In response to a Freedom of Information request, the States of Jersey has detailed the amounts received by their Criminal Offences Confiscation Fund, and what they have done with that money. The COCF was created in 1999, and statistics are available from 2004. From 2004 to date, the Jersey authorities confiscated £16,520,435, and received a further £46,350,104 through asset sharing arrangements – making a grand total of £62,870,539. There seems to be no pattern to the figures; they go up and down randomly.
When it comes to disbursements, however, there is a discernible shift in emphasis. If you look at the grants paid from the COCF in the early years, nearly everything went back into the legal side of things, in the form of money paid to law officers, courts and the like. In recent years, however, they have received much less, and instead grants are made to government departments for projects concerned with crime prevention – such as producing a guide for parents about drugs, and investing in bodycams for the police. I find this fascinating, not least because it supports my position that crime prevention is the way to go – after all, that’s what AML is all about. Of course we can to catch money launderers when we can, but the real aim is to make it such an unattractive option that they don’t even bother to try.
Does that mean we may be getting something right??!?! Despite the Paradise and other Papers stories!!!
As far as I am concerned, both Jersey and Guernsey get plenty right when it comes to AML and other anti-financial crime initiatives. That’s why I’m proud to work in both places. Sadly, other headlines are quicker and easier to grab.