2018 Conference Preview: The legal regulator’s role in combating Money Laundering and FATF mutual evaluation

The legal regulator’s role in combating Money Laundering and FATF mutual evaluation


The fourth round of mutual evaluations by the FATF is ongoing and focus on effective tools to combat money laundering. The speakers share their experience in preparing for and contributing to FATF review and provide valuable information in order to reach a positive outcome. The implementation of the risk-based approach is a challenge and a chance for legal regulators to develop new methods, in particular in the framework of self-regulatory bodies. The session focuses on various approaches in the light of different legal backgrounds.


Frederica Wilson manages the public policy work of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada and is the co-chair of the Federation’s AMLTF Working Group. She has been a licensed lawyer since 1993, practising in areas of criminal law, labour law and law reform.

Niels Hupkes has worked for The Netherlands Bar for 16 years and is currently manager policy and regulations of the Netherlands Bar. Niels specializes in regulatory affairs and anti-money laundering and chairs the monthly meeting of supervisors (local Bar presidents) in The Netherlands.

Ian Messer is a Chartered Accountant who leads the Law Society of Scotland’s AML supervisory work. He chairs the UK Legal Sector Affinity Group consisting of all legal sector AML supervisors and took part in the 2017 FATF onsite review of the UK.

John Elliot is Director of Regulation of the Law Society of Ireland and a member of its Money Laundering Reporting Committee and its AML Task Force. He is a solicitor and previously worked in-house in financial services in Ireland and the UK, having started his career in private practice.

Myles V. Lynk is the Peter Kiewit Foundation Professor of Law and the Legal Profession in Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University (“ASU”) , where he specializes in legal ethics and professional responsibility.

Rupert Manhart has been Chair of the CCBE Anti-Money Laundering Committee since 2017. He studied Law and International Economic Sciences in Innsbruck, Strasbourg and at the London School of Economics (LSE). Since 2009, he has been Attorney-at-Law in Austria.

Why is this session of particular interest and to whom?

Some countries have already finished the process of the fourth round of FATF mutual evaluations, some are still preparing for this review. The session is of particular interest for those regulators who still have to contribute to FATF. The implementation of the risk-based approach is ongoing, in particular in member states of the European Union, so that methods and tools are of particular interest for all legal regulators.

What particularly do you hope to explore in this session?  Any specific questions you hope to answer?

Will be further developed in the course of the preparation of the session. We will focus on questions like:

  • What are the greatest risks for lawyers getting (unwillingly) involved in money laundering or terrorist financing (for instance lack of knowledge, client money accounts, etc).
  • Suspicious transaction reporting is in contradiction with the client-attorney privilege. Do you agree?
  • What is the role that legal regulators should focus on? (e.g. education, supervision, rule setting, …)
  • What can legal regulators do in order to facilitate the identification of beneficial ownership / the source of funds / …?
  • Should the AML supervisor pro-acvtively push firms to improve processes?
  • Should AML supervisors upskill (e.g. by recruiting staff with financial services expertise) to tackle AML priorities?

What do you hope to achieve with this session?

The session will provide a panorama of issues that are currently “hot topics” for regulators of the legal profession in the field of anti-money laundering regulation

What is the setting of your session?

Presentations of 10 to 15 minutes by each speaker, followed by a panel discussion including contributions from the audience.

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