Second anti-money laundering unit formed to crack down on ‘high-risk’ Australian gambling industry

Second anti-money laundering unit formed to crack down on ‘high-risk’ Australian gambling industry

Article brief provided by The Guardian
  • Henry Belot, The Guardian
March 8, 2023 2:07 PM
  • Henry Belot, The Guardian

Australia’s financial crime watchdog has launched a second specialist unit in response to the increasing threat of money laundering within the gambling industry, which insiders acknowledge is “a high risk”.

The Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (Austrac) briefed gambling industry officials on the new unit at the Regulating the Game conference in Sydney this week, warning it had “identified serious non-compliance in a number of businesses”.

Late last year, Austrac launched an investigation into gambling companies Sportsbet and Bet365 on suspicions they failed to comply with anti-money laundering laws. External auditors will soon report back on their findings.

“Austrac allocates its resources to manage the threat of money laundering and terrorism financing in the Australian financial system, relative to the risks faced by different industry sectors,” an Austrac spokesperson said.