PETALING JAYA: Malaysian police are working with their counterparts in other countries to curb a global currency exchange that ran a US$6bil (RM18bil) cyber money-laundering operation.
Special Task Force (Operations and Counter Terrorism) director Commissioner Datuk Mohamad Fuzi Harun said police had been monitoring the illegal activity for two years with the help of Bank Negara.
“We are aware of the illegal operation, which also uses unlicensed money exchangers to avoid any paper trail,” he said yesterday.
He was commenting on a report in the New York Times, which named the currency exchange called Liberty Reserve, believed to be the world’s largest cyber money-laundering case.
The report said Liberty Reserve did not take or make cash payments directly but used “third party exchangers” that tended to be unlicensed money-transmitting businesses concentrated in Malaysia, Russia, Nigeria and Vietnam.
Comm Mohamad Fuzi explained that investigations were ongoing despite the initial outcome which seemed less than encouraging.
“It is hard to gather credible evidence on such trans-border crime.
“However, we have been tracking the money trail, communicating with our counterparts in other countries on a daily basis,” he said.
He explained that police were using the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001 to go after these syndicates.
“It is a global syndicate, thus it takes time to bring it down,” he said.
The New York Times report, citing American law enforcement officers, said Liberty Reserve, which was based in the United States but operated well beyond the country’s borders as well as traditional international banking regulations, was responsible for laundering billions of dollars over the past seven years, conducting 55 million transactions that involved millions of customers around the world.
News source: http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=...&sec=nation