23 Mar 2012

Marshalls Banking Commissioner not surprised by elevated concern on money laundering

4:24 pm on 23 March 2012

The Marshall Islands Banking Commissioner said she is not surprised by the changed United States rating of the country on money laundering in light of the large amounts of money involved in fraud charges pending in the High Court.

The Marshall Islands was elevated to a 'concern' level earlier this month by a U.S. State Department money laundering and financial crimes watch list.

The development happened despite the Marshall Islands government doubling its level of compliance with a State Department checklist of requirements aimed at preventing money laundering.

But Banking Commissioner Ann Marie Muller says the changed rating is not a surprise.

She says the dollar volume of fraud and money laundering of U.S.funds, or any other funds, speaks for itself.

Ten people are currently facing criminal charges that they allegedly stole more than half a million dollars in U.S. federal funding to the Ministry of Health.