Read below an article from Cayman News Service.
A number of financial service experts have created an anti-money laundering (AML) seminar designed for people in real estate and development to help them understand the risks and vulnerabilities of their sector and the need for them, just like financial institutions, to know their clients. The question of the property sector’s vulnerability to financial crime is an issue of concern.
In the face of runaway development on Grand Cayman, there appears to be a significant amount of real estate sales to overseas investors before projects are completed or without these buyers ever seeing the property they are investing in. As a result, alarm bells have been ringing about whether developers and real estate agents here are able to cope with the complex compliance required.
Paul Byles, Director of FTS, who has worked in the compliance and risk management sector for the past 15 years, will be joined by the Department of Commerce and Investment’s head of Compliance and Enforcement, Claudia Brady, as well as lawyers Huw Moses and Linda DaCosta from HSM to present the workshop.
“Real estate compliance encompasses every aspect of a property transactions and the regulations are evolving each year,” said Byles. ‘It’s everyone’s responsibility to keep up with the laws that govern dealing in real estate whether you are an agent, owner/broker, banker, attorney or other staff member handling the transactions.”
Speaking to CNS recently Victoria Templeman, who heads the Cayman Islands Bureau of Financial Investigations (CIBFI), said that Cayman’s development community is a weak link in the local anti-money laundering regime, and outreach to this sector is part of the plan to cut that risk.
The DCI is now responsible for ensuring that the real estate sector is compliant, and Brady said she will be offering insight into the way the industry is regulated to assist realtors and developers with their day to day risk management.
“The DCI is continuously finding ways to better educate all its licensees on best practice measures to assist them in managing risks in the real estate sector and we are looking forward to the opportunity to do so at this seminar,” Brady said.