You are here: Home - Mortgages - Remortgage - News -

National Crime Agency targets London property in money laundering hunt

Written by:
The National Crime Agency (NCA) has secured three ‘unexplained wealth orders’ (UWOs) against prime residential properties in the capital which they believe are linked to serious crime.

The three properties were originally bought for more than £80m and held by offshore companies. The NCA is investigating the funds used to purchase the properties.

In addition, the courts have granted interim freezing orders which means the properties cannot be sold, transferred or dissipated during the investigation.

UWOs are a relatively new tool at the disposal of the agency, and can force a person suspected of involvement in serious crime to explain the source of their wealth or how they have come to own an expensive asset which might not fit with someone with their income.

The first UWOs were issued last year against Zamira Hajiyeva, the wife of a now-jailed Azerbaijani banker. The orders were related to two properties worth a total of £22m.

The NCA did not name the person these latest orders were secured against, stating only that it was a “politically exposed person believed to be involved in serious crime”.

Andy Lewis, head of asset denial at the NCA, noted that UWOS are a “powerful tool” in investigating “illicit finance flowing into the UK”.

He added: “The NCA will not shy away from complex and detailed investigations against high profile individuals and professional enablers.”

Graeme Biggar, director general of the National Economic Crime Centre, noting that the purchase of prime property in London is a tactic used in order to launder money.

“A priority for the NECC is to ensure we explore every opportunity to deny assets linked to illicit finance. Our aim is to prevent misuse of the UK’s financial structures which undermines the integrity of the UK’s economy and institutions,” he continued.

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

The savings accounts paying the most interest

If one of your jobs this month is to get your finances in order, moving your savings to a higher paying deal i...

Coronavirus and your finances: what help can you get?

News and updates on everything to do with coronavirus and your personal finances.

Everything you need to know about being furloughed

If you’ve been ‘furloughed’ by your company, here’s what it means…

What will happen if rates change

How your finances will be impacted by a rise in interest rates.

Regular Savings Calculator

Small regular contributions can build up nicely over time.

Online Savings Calculator

Work out how your online savings can build over time.

Having a baby and your finances: seven top tips

We’re guessing the Duchess of Cambridge won’t be fretting about maternity pay or whether she’ll still be...

Protecting family wealth: 10 tips for cutting inheritance tax

Inheritance tax - sometimes known as 'death tax' - can cause even more heartache for bereaved families. But th...

Travel insurance: Five tips to ensure a successful claim

Ahead of your summer holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right level of travel cover or you co...

Money Tips of the Week

Read previous post:
Digital skills add £12,500 to salaries

More than half of the UK workforce lacks the digital skills they need for their job. Those with the right...