A shop owner today (December 13) pleaded guilty at the Kowloon City Magistrates' Court to a charge of operating a money service without a licence, breaching the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing (Financial Institutions) Ordinance, and was fined $5,000.
Acting on information, officers of the Customs and Excise Department mounted an operation against a shop in Yau Ma Tei in November and found that it operated a money changing and remittance service without a licence from the Commissioner of Customs and Excise.
The Ordinance, which came into operation on April 1, 2012, is aimed at enhancing anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing requirements for financial institutions in Hong Kong with a view to complying with international standards. Any person who operates a money service in Hong Kong without a licence commits a criminal offence. The maximum penalty on conviction is imprisonment for six months and a fine of $100,000.
Hong Kong Customs appeals to members of the public to report any case of unlicensed money service operation to the department by calling the 24-hour hotline 2545 6182.
Ends/Thursday, December 13 2012