So says Ritchie:
As they then note:
Reports from lawyers of suspicious dealings have slumped in recent years. In 2008, lawyers completed 15,000 such reports out of a total of 225,000, but by 2013 they issued just 4,000 out of a total of 315,000, according to the SRA.
Money laundering is a wide ranging offence and there is a legal obligation on all involved in financial services to report suspicious transactions to the relevant authorities. Suspicion can relate to tax fraud in the UK or elsewhere and suspected proceeds of crime.
It’s ludicrous that the number of suspected reported transactions is as low as it is. I wonder how many accountants really report their clients when they suspect tax fraud? But the number of reports by lawyers is especially odd.
Of course, it couldn’t possibly be that the introduction of a reporting system for suspected money laundering has led to a fall in the amount of money laundering.
Which is a rather odd thing for Ritchie to think really, because he keeps saying that we’ve got to have more reporting, more investigations, in order to bring tax evasion down. But he doesn’t believe that more reporting, more investigations, do actually reduce illegal activity.