A local real estate agent has been fined by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) for breaching its Anti-Money Laundering, Combatting the Financing of Terrorism, and Counter Proliferation Financing (AML/CFT/CPF) obligations.
The OFT carried out at onsite inspection at J. Boyd Estate Agency Limited’s (the “Business’s) premises on 19th August 2022. The inspection formed part of an ongoing onsite inspection programme to ensure that real estate agents are effectively meeting their AML/CFT/CPF obligations under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2015 and the Sanctions Act 2019.
Although the OFT found no evidence of money laundering or terrorist financing, they identified several breaches and deficiencies, resulting in a £750 fine. Unfortunately, the real estate agent failed to pay the fine by the stipulated deadline, as a result of which the OFT is publishing the details of the financial penalty.
In the past year the OFT has carried out 24 on-site visits to real estate agents and issued eight fines totalling £11,500 for identified breaches of AML/CFT/CPF obligations.
The OFT would therefore like to remind all real estate agents to familiarise themselves with the OFT’s AML/CFT/CPF Guidance Notes and with their AML/CFT/CPF legal obligations generally to avoid sanctions for non-compliance. Significant guidance is available on the OFT’s website.
The OFT remains at real estate agents’ disposal should they have any queries about their legal obligations and encourages agents to raise areas where they may require specific guidance with the OFT: email@example.com