MORE than 20 Scottish businesses have been handed fines totalling £96,000 for not complying with money laundering laws in the past three years, data has revealed.

UK Government data released this week listed scores of firms from across the UK who have been given penalty notices for various breaches of financial regulations.

The Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 (MLR 2017) set out a number of requirements for firms operating in high-risk areas which could be open to money laundering.

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Those private sector firms who operate in these legal roles such as accountants, financial service businesses, estate agents, and solicitors, are required to put a number of measures in place to stop the system being abused by criminals.

If they don’t, the UK Government can impose a fine or even suspend or cancel a business's licence if the breach is serious enough.

Earlier this week, the UK Government released a list of firms from across the UK who had breached regulations.

The National:

In Scotland, 21 businesses were named, with fines totalling £95,936 over three years.

The highest, given to Glasgow-based KJM Accountancy Limited ASP in 2022, totalled £15,600, for “failing to apply for registration at the required time”.

Edinburgh-based Orinsen Ltd, a commercial property consultant, were handed a £13,100 fine in 2021 for the same regulation breach.

The majority of fines, ranging from more than £1000 to £6400 related to not applying for registration in time.

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Go View Estate Agents Ltd, based in Bridge of Weir, Renfrewshire, were handed a penalty notice for a fine of £7500 for failing to conduct “due diligence and timing of verification”.

Glasgow Bookkeepers Limited ASP were given a penalty notice of £3740 for failing to “provide requested information or documents”.

Under the regulations HMRC has a duty to publish the details of businesses who do not comply, but did so with a number of caveats.

They said the “published person may have changed their behaviour” or may no longer be based at the address.

The UK Government also warned that the business at the address listed may have no connections to the business handed the penalty, or if it has the same name “could be under new, and completely different, management”.

The regulations also set out that the amount of penalty imposed will take into account the seriousness of the offence, the reason behind the breach, the size of the business and the amount they are exposed to money laundering activities.

Money laundering is exchanging money or assets obtained through criminality that are “clean” and don’t have an obvious link to criminal activity.

“Money laundering also includes money that’s used to fund terrorism, however it’s obtained,” government guidance states.