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AUSTRAC investigates compliance of Bell Financial entities

Yasmine Masi17 February 2022
Two gold cogs with regulatory and compliance written on them for ASIC

The Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), has ordered an external audit on three entities within the Bell Financial Group, Bell Potter Securities Limited, Bell Potter Capital Limited and Third Party Platform Pty Ltd.

The appointed external auditor will assess the entities’ compliance with the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing (AML/CTF) regime, after AUSTRAC identified several causes for concern.

The auditor will inspect the three entities’ compliance with the requirements to have and comply with an AML/CTF program, the requirement to have an ongoing customer due diligence system, their obligations to report on suspicious matter, and the maintenance of enrolment details within the necessary timeframes.

Nicole Rose PSM, Chief Executive Officer of AUSTRAC, said the AML/CTF regime works to protect businesses, the financial ecosystem and the Australian community from threats of criminal activity.

“Australian financial services businesses have a responsibility to ensure they devote the necessary resources and processes to comply with their AML/CTF obligations under the law,” she said.

“We will continue to work closely with Bell Financial Group to address any compliance concerns, and take action where any businesses that we regulate are failing to appropriately protect themselves and Australia’s financial system from criminal activity.”

The external auditor will report back to AUSTRAC 180 days after their appointment. The outcomes of the audit will determine the compliance status of the three businesses and whether further regulatory action is required by AUSTRAC.

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