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NEW MONEY LAUNDERING BILL: 7-year prison term without option of fine awaits offenders

By Henry Umoru & Joseph Erunke

ABUJA—IF the Money Laundering Prevention and Prohibition Bill 2016 presented to Senate by President Muhammadu Buhari sails through, it prescribes stiff penalty for anybody found culpable of the offence and upon conviction shall be an imprisonment for a term of not less than seven years without an option of fine.

According to the bill, any financial institution found guilty will have a fine of not less than N25 million, while non- financial businesses will be liable to a fine of not less than N10 million.

The bill defines any perpetrator of the crime as “a person who knows, ought reasonably to have known or suspects that property has a criminal origin, commits an offence if he conceals, disguises, converts, transfers or removes the property from Nigeria.’’

The proposed bill also stipulated three years imprisonment or above for anybody who failed to report persons involved in the illicit act.

It would be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari had last month presented an executive bill for an Act to repeal the Money Laundering( Prohibition) Act, 2011( As Amended) and enact the money laundering( Prevention and prohibition) Act to provide for measures for the prevention and prohibition of money laundering in Nigeria and for other related matters.




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