Dirty laundry – Clubs and Pubs are not invisible to AUSTRAC

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In March, Tabcorp was fined $45 million, in a civil penalty orders with AUSTRAC (more information on this case found here). Recently, AUSTRAC has accused Commonwealth Bank of 53,700 breaches, which can result in a maximum penalty of $18 million per breach.
AUSTRAC reporting season runs from January to March each year. But you can attend to your requirement early and get them out of the way. It’s worth considering reviewing your program now and undertaking training of your staff to avoid the inevitable rush in March.
Do not be fooled, the Clubs and Pubs industry is not invisible to AUSTRAC’s eyeline. Over the past year, AUSTRAC has conducted a National Pubs and Clubs Campaign and engaged 150 pubs and clubs. Through the campaign, AUSTRAC identified two characteristics as indicators of high risk for money laundering

  • venues with high denomination currencies to be inserted into machines ($50s & $100s which are permitted in Queensland);
  • and venues located in higher crime areas.

AUSTRAC has released two fact sheets for Clubs and Pubs to assist in their AML/CTF obligations. The Factsheets are found below or on AUSTRAC’s website.
Myths vs. Facts
AML/CTF Tips for Clubs and Pubs
Furthermore, The Black Economy Taskforce, tasked to tackled the black economy or the cash economy that is operating outside tax and regulatory system (more information about the Taskforce is found here), has released a conference paper regarding 54 additional policies based on over 90 recent public and stakeholder consultations. The public submission for public comment and reactions are now closed and the Taskforce’s recommendation and final report will be released in October 2017.

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