PHILIPPINES ADDS TEETH TO MONEY LAUNDRING LAWS

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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte signed a law on Friday expanding the Anti-Money Laundering Council’s (ALMC) power to investigate and impose sanctions against companies suspected of funding terrorism or the “proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.”

The Anti-Money Laundering Act allows the AMLC to apply for search and seizure requests and subpoena companies with ties to terrorist organizations. It also gives them the power to control assets of suspicious companies if granted by court order and prohibits any court other than the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court from granting injunctions requested by companies whose assets have been frozen for investigation.

The law expands the AMLC’s authority to investigate transactions made by Philippines-based online casino operators and real estate brokers and developers who make transactions exceeding 7.5 million Philippine pesos.