Tuesday 17 May 2022
09:00 | Introduction
Antonio Ghirlando | Senior Advisor on Financial Crime Compliance
09:15 | Regulatory Developments
Dr Yanika Bonnici Pisani | Senior Officer, Guidance and Outreach – Legal Affairs Section – FIAU
Dr Jonathan Phyall | Head Legal Affairs Section – FIAU
Kristina Apap Dougall | Manager of the risk team within the supervision section – FIAU
During this session, the FIAU will provide an overview on any new AML/CFT developments, particularly guidance documents issued by the same, as well as a short update on the FATF process.
10:15 | Sanctions – Recent Developments in light of events in Ukraine
Dr Luke Mizzi | Associate – Camilleri Preziosi
Peter Mizzi | Advisor – Camilleri Preziosi
This session will discuss the recent sanctions imposed on Russian / Belarusian individuals and entities in light of events in Ukraine. Initially, the session will seek to explain which sanctions apply to Malta, what type of sanctions exist, are currently in place and against whom. It will then deal with the obligations of subject persons under the National Interest (Enabling Powers) Act, in particular sanction screening processes, internal controls and system and the procedure of immediately notifying the Sanctions Monitoring Board (SMB) once a sanctioned hit has been confirmed. Recent guidance notes published by both the FIAU and SMB will also be discussed.
11:00 | Break
11:15 | EU AML Package: Proposals & Considerations
Antonio Ghirlando | Senior Advisor on Financial Crime Compliance
On the 20th July 2021 the European Commission presented the EU’s new AML/CFT package, comprising four legislative proposals that introduce:
- The establishment of an EU-wide AML/CFT supervisory authority (AMLA);
- An EU rule book on AML/CFT creating a harmonised set of detailed requirements that will be directly applicable to subject persons;
- An EU-wide financial intelligence unit to act as a coordination and support mechanism, to be overseen by AMLA; and
- An extension of the scope of the wire transfer regulation.
These ambitious proposals, which implement the European Commission’s Action Plan of May 2020, constitute the biggest ever overhaul to the EU’s AML/CFT regime. They are designed to create a stronger EU regulatory and supervisory framework on AML/CFT that can successfully tackle the risks related to money laundering and funding of terrorism, and which bridge the identified weaknesses in the national frameworks.
The presentation will highlight the main points included in each of the proposals set out by the European Commission and go over some of the practical implications for subject persons.
12:15 | Fintech/Crypto Best Practice – Insight & Guidance in Designing an AML Programme
Dr Chris Agius | Regulatory Director – CSA Group
The fintech and cryptocurrency space has been one of the most dynamic sectors, especially in relation to emerging legislation and regulatory obligations relating to anti-money laundering and funding of terrorism. Aside from numerous publications being made by the Financial Action Task Force, as well as other international bodies concerning the application to AML/CFT controls and mechanisms, new expectations are being set by local competent authorities when it comes to assessing the preparedness and competence of key players and organisations operating within these industries.
The speaker will delve into various obligations being imposed on such service providers and/or issuers, as well as those subject persons who may be required to provide professional services to operators in these new emerging industries. High-level insight and guidance will also be provided in relation to specific considerations that should be included when designing an AML/CFT policies and procedures.
13:00 | Close of Session
Friday 20 May 2022
09:00 | Introduction
Antonio Ghirlando | Senior Advisor on Financial Crime Compliance
09:15 | Beneficial Ownership – Outlining Developments at FATF level as well as the Local State of Play
Dr Rakele Cini| Independent Legal Consultant
Beneficial ownership has taken the spotlight in recent months. Malta’s FATF grey listing and changes that have taken place locally have impacted practitioners considerably. Dr Rakele Cini will be delivering a session outlining the key changes that have taken place on the topic and what practitioners should be looking out for.
10:00 | The Dilemma – Is it Knowledge, Suspicion, Speculation or Simple Paranoia?
Cynthia Borg | Head of Financial Crime Compliance and Group MLRO – APS Bank
The MLRO is at times faced with a dilemma – Are there sufficient grounds to escalate a report to the authorities? A practical session on the obligations surrounding suspicious reporting. The session will address the following questions:
- What is the difference between Knowledge, Suspicion and Reasonable Grounds?
- To what extent should the MLRO investigates?
- What are potential red flags which should trigger the escalation of an internal report t to the authorities?
- What are common pitfalls which should be avoided when filing a Suspicious report?
- What happens after?
10:45 | Break
11:00 | TAX Matters – Related to Money Laundering (Including Typologies & Red Flags)
Ariane Azzopardi | Director, Quality & Risk Management – KPMG
Two of the three areas highlighted by the FATF in Malta’s grey listing, related to tax matters. In November 2021, as a response to address these issues, , the FIAU issued a guidance document Typologies & Red Flags: Indicators of Tax-Related ML. The typologies have been placed in the following categories:
- Customer’s Identification Information;
- Customer Interactions & Behaviour;
- Entity Structure & Governance;
- Source of wealth & source of Funds; and
- Unusual or suspicious transactions.
11:45 | MFSA Recent Developments
Kurt Spiteri Lucas | Senior Manager, Financial Crime Compliance – MFSA
Being the financial services regulator in Malta, MFSA has always included financial crime elements during its supervision of financial entities. However, since the publication of the Financial Crime Strategy in 2019, MFSA embarked on enhancing financial crime supervision across the authority. During this slot, developments resulting from this strategy will be discussed in detail in order to give an insight of the financial crime related tasks currently being conducted at the MFSA.
12:15 | An Overview of MGA’s Financial Crime Compliance
Antonio Zerafa | Head, financial Crime Compliance – MGA
The presentation will present an overview of the MGA’s Financial Crime Compliance department, focusing on the current work of both the AML and SBI units. The presentation will also delve into the department’s priorities for 2022.
12:45 | Close of Conference
is a seasoned compliance specialist with a specific focus on financial crime compliance, including the prevention of money laundering, countering the funding of terrorism, combatting proliferation finance, sanctions, anti-bribery & corruption, and fraud. He is also well versed in other regulatory compliance obligations.
Antonio is actively involved in the provision of real-time operational support, specialist advice, intuitive guidance and training to several businesses seeking to ensure ongoing compliance with their regulatory obligations. He also assists Money Laundering Reporting Officers (MLROs) and Compliance Officers with their day-to-day tasks and oversight.
During his career he has worked with various licensed entities in both the financial and non-financial sectors, having served as the Head of Compliance, Head of Financial Crime Compliance, Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO) and Data Protection Officer (DPO). He also headed the Compliance and Legal & International Sections of the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU) and served as the Secretary General of the Malta Bankers’ Association (MBA).
Antonio has been involved in several local and international committees, and has also presented numerous papers at various workshops, seminars, conferences and training events.
Antonio is a graduate of the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Dr. Yanika Bonnici Pisani is a Senior Officer within the Guidance and Outreach – Legal Affairs Section of the FIAU, which team is responsible for identifying and responding to the guidance needs of subject persons.
Yanika joined the FIAU in 2018 and primarily holds experience within the remote gaming sector. Since joining the FIAU, she has been involved in the drafting of general AML/CFT guidance applicable across all industry sectors, as well as having been involved in various AML/CFT projects across multiple specific industry sectors, including the drafting of sector-specific guidance. As part of her work, Yanika also represents the FIAU by participating in outreach efforts among the private and public sector and provides training on AML/CFT.
Yanika studied law at the University of Malta and is a warranted lawyer. She is also a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist (CAMS).
Dr Jonathan Phyall is the Head of the FIAU’s Legal Affairs Section. A lawyer by profession, he joined the FIAU in 2016 and has represented Malta and the FIAU in a number of European and international fora as well as being heavily involved in the drafting of amendments to the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, the Prevention of Money Laundering and Funding of Terrorism Regulations, and the Implementing Procedures.
Kristina Apap Dougall is currently the manager of the risk team within the supervision section at the FIAU, which team is responsible for coordinating the risk assessment process through the collections, assessments and implementation of risk data arising from various data sources. Following experience in the corporate sector, she joined the supervision team in 2015 and has been involved in multiple developments and projects throughout her tenure.
Kristina completed Bachelor of Commerce degree with honors in Banking and Finance at the University of Malta in 2014 and submitted a thesis on the impact of the fourth anti-money laundering directive on Malta’s banking sector. In 2018, Kristina furthered her studies at the Heriott Watt University where she read for a Master of Science degree in Financial Management.
Dr Luke Mizzi is an Associate at Camilleri Preziosi practicing primarily in financial services and compliance law, banking and finance and anti-financial crime regulation. Luke also advises on regulatory aspects relating to credit and financial institutions, and investment service providers. Luke holds a Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Malta as well as a Master of Laws from University College London (UCL) with a specialisation in Banking and Finance Law.
Peter Mizzi works as an advisor at Camilleri Preziosi advising primarily in anti-financial crime regulation and regulatory compliance in financial services law. Peter holds an International Diploma in Anti-Money Laundering from the International Compliance Association (ICA) as well as a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with International Business from the University of London (UOL).
Dr Chris Agius is a lawyer by profession, specialising in corporate, commercial and financial services law. He is a member of the Chamber of Advocates Malta and is warranted to practice in the national courts. Chris is also currently sitting on the board of the Virtual Financial Assets Agent Business Section at the Malta Chamber of Commerce.
Chris joined CSA Group in 2018 in order to direct the new business unit relating to consultancy and advisory services to companies operating VFA and/or investment services. Chris has been following the regulatory developments relating to cryptocurrencies since before the coming into force of the virtual financial assets’ framework. As a result, and through his continued appointment as director of CS Fintech Services, he has become one of Malta’s leading advisors when it comes to international companies seeking to establish their regulated financial services business in Malta. Over the years, Chris has also gained experience in various other fields, including corporate and commercial matters, AML/CFT obligations, risk management and other financial services. Chris was appointed as Regulatory Director at CSA Group, whereby he oversees the management of the regulatory and corporate departments, which offer corporate planning and CSP services, regulatory advice, and other assistance that clients may require in the administration of their companies.
Prior to joining CSA Group, Chris has held managerial posts with other reputable mid-tier firms, where he provided comprehensive advice to international clients focusing on corporate and other technology-related services, and has also gained further exposure to the sector as an in-house legal counsel with a start-up fintech company offering innovative financial services.
Dr Rakele Cini is an independent legal consultant with many years of experience in AML/CFT, regulatory and compliance advisory. She primarily advises local & international firms / practitioners operating within the regulated industries on matters relating to the prevention of money laundering & funding of terrorism, due diligence, risk management, good governance, and other compliance areas. She is invited to lecture regularly by private institutions and regulatory bodies on these topics. She was previously head of Risk & Compliance at BDO Malta and, prior to that, formed part of the practice protection group at Deloitte Malta for numerous years. Rakele is an active member of the PMLFT sub-committee at the Malta Institute of Accountants and the Institute of Financial Services Practitioners.
Cynthia Borg is the Head of Financial Crime Compliance and Group Money Laundering Reporting Officer at APS Bank. In her role, Cynthia is responsible for establishing and maintaining a robust financial crime oversight framework covering Anti-Money Laundering, Sanctions, Counter Terrorist Financing, Anti-Bribery & Corruption and Fraud.
Ms Borg is a certified financial crime compliance professional, with a 28-year career in Banking. She spent 26 years with HSBC Bank Malta plc where she held various positions including that of internal auditor and various AML headship positions. In 2013, she was appointed as the Bank’s Financial Crime Compliance Lead for Retail Banking & Wealth Management Services, eventually moving to a more focused role as the Bank’s Head of Global Standards and AML operations.
In 2016 she was appointed Head of Compliance and MLRO for MeDirect Bank Plc and two years later she moved to Diligex, an AML/CFT consultancy specialised firm, as Head of Compliance.
Ariane Azzopardi is a Director within the Quality and Risk Management function. She has over fifteen years’ experience in this field, and is the delegate of the Risk Management Partner at KPMG in Malta. She is involved in the implementation and monitoring compliance with quality and risk management policies and procedures in KPMG in Malta also handling compliance and risk management queries, including those related to the Prevention of Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism (PMLFT) and ethics and independence. She delivers sessions on PMLFT at the KPMG roundtable and also at various other seminars and conferences.
Ariane is the chair of the PMLFT sub-committee at the Malta Institute of Accountants and a committee member of the PMLFT sub-committee at the Institute of Financial Services Practitioners.
Kurt Spiteri Lucas is a Senior Manager within the Financial Crime Compliance at MFSA, Kurt Spiteri Lucas graduated in B.Com (Hons) Banking and Finance from the University of Malta in 2005 and has been working in the financial services sector since then. During these past 17 years, Kurt started as a summer worker with a small investments firm and continued to work in the Investments Services sector throughout his various employments, having held positions within operations and due diligence teams within 3 leading investment firms mainly, with a brief stint at a credit institution, thus gaining significant experience in such sector. He joined MFSA’s Financial Crime Compliance Unit in 2015 and as a Senior Manager, his main tasks are providing Financial-Crime guidance and expertise to the MFSA’s Prudential & Conduct supervisory functions during their respective on-site inspections, compiling various financial crime-related statistics and also involved in the drafting of policies and carrying out research intended to be used by the various teams within the function itself and the Authority as a whole.
Antonio Zerafa is the Head of Financial Crime Compliance at Malta’s sole gambling regulator, the Malta Gaming Authority. He has now been engaged with the Authority for more than 6 years, working in different roles and directorates, mainly concerning matters related to gaming-related crime, AML/CFT, due diligence, criminal probity, and sports betting integrity. Over the years, Antonio demonstrated his expertise in such matters outside the workplace ambiance also through his academic roles as Casual Visiting Lecturer and Research Supervisor at the University of Malta.
Antonio continuously seeks ways of nourishing his expertise within the aforementioned fields, and is currently undertaking a PhD in Law & Criminology at Sheffield Hallam University (UK) where he is focusing his research on the relationship between artificial intelligence and the remote gaming industry, and how this affects financial crime prevention and responsible gambling matters. Antonio holds a Master’s Degree in Counter Fraud and Counter Corruption Studies from the University of Portsmouth (UK) and a BA (Hons.) Degree in Criminology from the University of Malta. Antonio is also an author whose work and research has been published by the Journal of Financial Crime (Emerald Publishing).