Guyana Not Ruling out Lifestyle Audit Legislation in Fight Against Money Laundering

Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Basil Williams

GEORGETOWN, Guyana, Wednesday May 23, 2018
– The Attorney General’s Chambers is open to considering lifestyle audit legislation to assist in Guyana’s fight against money laundering, terrorist financing and other financial crimes.

Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Basil Williams made the disclosure on the heels of Legal Advisor at the Commonwealth Secretariat Shadrach Haruna saying that, if implemented in Guyana, such legislation would be an effective tool in combatting money laundering and tax evasion.

A lifestyle audit determines if the lifestyle of a person matches his/her known income stream. Lifestyle audit legislation has been enacted in Canada, and has reportedly been successful in curbing money laundering and tax evasion in that jurisdiction.

Williams said while he has not read the legislation, he believes it would assist in the administration’s thrust against corruption and proceeds from illicit conduct.

Guyana, which was once blacklisted by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) under the previous government, is now in its fourth round of mutual evaluation.

Haruna said the FATF is looking at the risks in each country and assessing measures implemented to counter them. He noted that the capacity of the country to counter terrorist financing and other related crimes is measured by how well the law enforcement authorities can investigate and prosecute these cases.

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