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The Proceeds of Crime (Northern Ireland) Order 1996

Status:

This is the original version (as it was originally made).

Failure to disclose knowledge or suspicion of money laundering proceeds of drug trafficking

44.—(1) A person shall be guilty of an offence if—

(a)he knows or suspects that another person is engaged in money laundering proceeds of drug trafficking;

(b)the information, or other matter, on which that knowledge or suspicion is based came to his attention in the course of his trade, profession, business or employment; and

(c)he does not disclose the information or other matter to a constable as soon as is reasonably practicable after it comes to his attention.

(2) Paragraph (1) does not make it an offence for a professional legal adviser to fail to disclose any information or other matter which has come to him in privileged circumstances.

(3) It is a defence to a charge of committing an offence under this Article that the person charged had a reasonable excuse for not disclosing the information or other matter in question.

(4) Where a person discloses to a constable—

(a)his suspicion or belief that another person is engaged in money laundering proceeds of drug trafficking, or

(b)any information or other matter on which that suspicion or belief is based,

the disclosure shall not be treated as a breach of any restriction imposed by statute or otherwise.

(5) Without prejudice to paragraph (3) or (4), in the case of a person who was in employment at the relevant time, it is a defence to a charge of committing an offence under this Article that he disclosed the information or other matter in question to the appropriate person in accordance with the procedure established by his employer for the making of such disclosures.

(6) A disclosure to which paragraph (5) applies shall not be treated as a breach of any restriction imposed by statute or otherwise.

(7) In this Article “money laundering” means doing any act which constitutes an offence under Article 45,46 or 47 or, in the case of an act done otherwise than in Northern Ireland, would constitute such an offence if done in Northern Ireland.

(8) For the purposes of paragraph (7), having possession of any property shall be taken to be doing an act in relation to it.

(9) For the purposes of this Article, any information or other matter comes to a professional legal adviser in privileged circumstances if it is communicated, or given, to him—

(a)by, or by a representative of, a client of his in connection with the giving by the adviser of legal advice to the client;

(b)by, or by a representative of, a person seeking legal advice from the adviser; or

(c)by any person—

(i)in contemplation of, or in connection with, legal proceedings; and

(ii)for the purpose of those proceedings.

(10) No information or other matter shall be treated as coming to a professional legal adviser in privileged circumstances communicated or given with a view to furthering any purpose.

(11) A person guilty of an offence under this Article shall be liable—

(a)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years or to a fine or to both;

(b)on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or to both.

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