Stopping Money Laundering in London

Meeting: 
MQT on 2016-03-16
Session date: 
March 16, 2016
Reference: 
2016/1207
Question By: 
Murad Qureshi
Organisation: 
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

Is it not time for estate agents to run checks on the buyers of properties, as they are legally obliged to do with sellers, at least at the top end of the housing market in Central London?

Answer

Answer for Stopping Money Laundering in London

Answer for Stopping Money Laundering in London

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Responsibility for anti-money laundering activities has recently been transferred from the Office for Fair Trading to Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs. HMRC are now enforcing the Money Laundering Regulations 2007, which require estate agents to take adequate measures to verify the identity of customers and beneficial owners. Failure to comply can result in a criminal record or an unlimited fine.

The Government has also said it will launch a consultation on how to stop entities in offshore tax havens from owning property in the UK anonymously.