2019 set to be record year for AML fines

Written by Peter Walker
28/05/2019

This year looks set to be on course for a record number of Anti-Money Laundering (AML) fines, with $7.7 billion already handed out in January to April 2019, compared to $1.16 billion worth of fines in the same period last year.

The combined value of penalties given out so far in 2019 is over 70 per cent of the total handed out in the whole of 2014 ($10.89 billion) – the year which currently holds the record for highest total value of fines.

It is nearly double the value of AML fines from the entire of 2018 ($4.27 billion), despite the number of penalties being roughly a third of the total for last year (nine in January to April 2019 versus 29 in 2018).

This is according to analysis carried out by Encompass Corporation, which also showed that US-based regulators penalise institutions the most, followed by those in the UK.

Banks still receive the majority of penalties, but there is a growing focus on other sectors, such as legal, gaming and cryptocurrency.

Wayne Johnson, Encompass co-founder and chief executive, commented: “Multi-million dollar fines are becoming the ‘norm’, and 2019 looks set to be the biggest year yet in terms of the value of fines handed out by regulators.”

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