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What is money laundering and how can I prevent it in my organization?

Money laundering is a criminal process that has serious consequences within the Venezuelan criminal framework. Because it involves the well-known "money laundering" or "money laundering", whose practices are used by major criminals such as drug cartels, corrupt businessmen, politicians, among others. In this sense, companies must be very clear about the criminal methods that can be used in their activities, in order to prevent them and take accurate actions when such cases occur within the business units. So that they can have effective correction, prevention and defense mechanisms against this crime and safeguard the company's image. That is why in this article we will explain what money laundering is and how you can prevent it in your company.

What is money laundering?

Money laundering is an action by which a criminal person or organization gives the appearance of legality and legality to funds or capital from commercial activities punishable by law. In these cases, money laundering acts as a mechanism to conceal the real origin of the funds by means of different documents that lack legality in the legal and financial sphere.

This is a form of exploitation commonly used in activities related to drug trafficking, human trafficking networks, illegal mining, transfer of capital from one country to another, among others. So in that sense, companies that determine that their operational risks may fall into this type of crime, must design compliance plans that are adapted to their industry in favor of the legality of each activity.

What are the consequences of money laundering?

This crime is typified in the Organic Law on Drugs in Title VI On Crimes, Chapter I On Crimes Committed by Organized Crime and Penalties in Article 149. It also appears in the Organic Law against Organized Crime and Financing of Terrorism in Article 35.

The specific consequences for thea money laundering in the Venezuelan criminal justice system are sentences of 10 to 15 years and fines equivalent to the value of the illicitly obtained assets. In the event that the following activities are proven:

  • Conversion, transfer and conveyance of capital assets, assets, profits and surpluses for the purpose of concealing their origin.
  • Concealment or simulation of the nature, origin, location, disposition, destination, movement, or ownership of the goods.
  • Acquisition of the proceeds of crime.
  • Safeguard, investment, transformation and administration of goods or capital from illicit activities.

How to avoid money laundering in my organization?

To avoid money laundering in your organization it is necessary to analyze the risks present in your business model. Once these risks have been identified, and if money laundering is one of them, more effective prevention measures can be taken. In the case of money laundering, it can be prevented through the implementation of corporate compliance. This is effective, since it regulates and normalizes the daily activities of the company within the framework of the law. So if any member of the organization begins to have suspicious attitudes, by monitoring the compliance structure we can verify if any of its activities are outside the framework of the law.

Similarly, by understanding the stages of the so-called money laundering, we can be clear about the procedures to carry it out within a company. So, starting to understand the deposit as a starting point, we can establish preventive mechanisms when accepting external investments in our business model. That is, an affidavit can be implemented specifying the origins of the amount to be invested and the location of the same. In this way, the legal team that accompanies the company can investigate and determine the legality of the same.

Another stage is concealment, which can be prevented in advance when auditing the funds allocated to our organization. In this way, by following certain methodologies, it is possible to identify inconsistencies in records or other documents that determine the legality of the funds to be received. Therefore, it is important that each financial transaction is reviewed by a team of lawyers who can contrast the procedures with the laws in force in the legal jurisdictions to be applied.

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