Suspicious alerts in money
laundering –the Crédit
Mohammed Ahmad Naheem
Seven Foundation Switzerland, Zurich, Switzerland
Purpose –The purpose of this paper is to providean analysis of the recent Crédit Agricole case outcome,
whereby the bank was found to have undertaken insufﬁcient investigation and failedto follow through on
reportingsuspicious account activity, in line with AML compliancerequirements.
Design/methodology/approach –The paper uses the two main legal documents in the Michailidis v
Crédit AgricoleCorporate and Investment (CACI) bank case and analysesthe judgement details to discuss the
implications for the banking and ﬁnancial services sector on money laundering and AML compliance
Findings –The main ﬁndings from the analysisare that bankshave a greater legal responsibility towards
detecting and reporting suspicioustransactions than they would have previously considered. This includes
identifyingthe source and purpose of fund transfers and establishing the beneﬁcialownership of recipients.
Research limitations/implications –The research topic is new, and therefore, analysis papers and
other academicwriting on this topic are limited.
Practical implications –The research paper has identiﬁed a number of implications to the banking
sector on addressing AML deﬁciencies, especially the detection and reporting requirements of suspicious
Social implications –This paper has implications for the corporate social responsibility of banks and
other ﬁnancial services towards monitoring the source and use of money that is in their organisation. The
paper identiﬁes areas of legalresponsibility that banks now have to manage, as part of their commitment to
supportthe prevention of money laundering.
Originality/value –The originalityof this paper is the current example of theCrédit Agricole case and the
future legal implications for banks and ﬁnancial services on suspicious transaction reporting and money
Keywords Banking, Trade Based Money Laundering, Risk assessment, Anti money laundering,
Credit agricole, Suspicious transaction reports
Paper type Case study
Please note that this paper was composed and submitted for review to this journal in May 2015. All
the content was current at that point in time (May 2015). The regulation industry is constantly
evolving with new research emerging and being published. These points need to be taken into
consideration when reading this paper. The author acknowledges being the recipient of a research
grant awarded by Princess Ālae as part of Seven Foundation’s“2020 Banking Vision –building
banks of the future”and he thanks her for the continued support and motivation both to himself and
other students who beneﬁt through her generosity (www.sevenfoundation.ch). The author also
thanks Professor Muhammad Jumáah (a leading economist of this era in the world today, based in
Damascus), who has continued to provide valuable input both through his teaching of the science of
economics and for his continued guidance.
Journalof Financial Crime
Vol.24 No. 4, 2017
© Emerald Publishing Limited
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