CPS updates guidance on prosecuting ‘failure to disclose’ offences
On Tuesday 2 June, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) updated its guidance on prosecuting standalone ‘failure to disclose’ cases under section 330 of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA).
The guidance now makes it possible to prosecute a section 330 offence after 2 June regardless of whether an offence of money laundering has been substantiated.
The aim of the update is to encourage professionals working in the regulated sector to disclose any suspicion of money laundering to law enforcement.
The CPS has stated that it believes the guidance will provide clarity for prosecutors and law enforcement when charging under section 330.
The below is an extract from the updated guidance:
“It is possible to charge an individual under section 330 even though there is insufficient evidence to establish that money laundering was planned or has taken place.
Section 330 therefore creates an obligation to report suspicions of money laundering to the authorities, regardless of whether money laundering actually takes place.
This means that where individuals in the regulated sector receive information giving rise to a suspicion, or provides reasonable grounds for suspecting, that another is engaged in money laundering, an offence is committed by failing to make a report under section 330, regardless of whether it subsequently transpires that the money laundering cannot be proven, or that it did not occur.”