Wed. Sep 18th, 2019

Money laundering alerts go up 46%

The recorders Spanish detected last year almost 22,600 entries with suspicion of hiding money laundering operations, which meant a strong increase of 46% over the number of alerts detected in 2017, according to the information provided by the Registrar's College itself.

The greatest increase was detected in the property records, where almost 10,000 alerts were sent to the possible existence that could conceal some form of money laundering from criminal origin. The increase in this section was close to 65%, warning the authorities responsible for prosecuting this type of crime. In the commercial registers, 12,700 alerts were issued over the past year, with an annual increase of 34%.

All these notices were sent by the registrars from their respective registers and communicated to the AntiBlanking Registration Center (CRAB), where they were treated and sent, as the case may be, to the Executive Service of the Commission for the Prevention of Money Laundering and Monetary Infractions (Sepblac ). The College of Registrars only refers to the Sepblac those cases that, after a computer debugging, present very serious signs of hiding some crime, and comes to represent around 1% of the total number of alerts.

These notices give an idea of ​​how transactions with money of dubious origin evolve

Thus, although the high volume of alerts is translated into a few hundred judicial processes, it is indicative of how the realization of commercial or real estate operations of dubious tasks evolves and of how the purchase of real estate may be hiding in hundreds of cases the way criminal organizations launder the money they get from their illegal businesses.

The dean of the school, María Emilia Adán, explained to The vanguard that "registrars have a legal obligation to send those alerts when the data they obtain induces them some kind of suspicion, because only in this way can they put the Sepblac on the track in the first place and, secondly, the security forces of the State".

The CRAB was officially created at the end of 2015, so 2018 was its third full year of operation. His youth makes even the first cases detected in 2016 that have involved the opening of investigations and legal proceedings are still pending or pending trial, so it is not possible to establish the volume or the final result of the system. However, it is useful to establish a system of early detection of possible instrumentation of property and companies for the commission of crimes.

The work of the registrars to tackle organized crime launched last year an additional instrument, the registration of real ownership. The database prepared by the registrars provides the Sepblac, the Public Prosecutor's Office or the security forces who are the true owners of each and every one of the companies registered in the Spanish registries. Likewise, it allows researchers to consult the ownership scheme when the owners make use of numerous companies interposed with the objective, precisely to dilute the real ownership of certain companies.

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