Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Bermuda regulator fines Crown Global Life Insurance over anti-money laundering failures

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The Bermuda Monetary Authority has fined two life insurers – Crown Global Life Insurance Ltd. and Crown Global Life Insurance (Bermuda) Ltd. – US$400,000 for various anti-money laundering failings.

Crown Global Insurance Group LLC offers variable life insurance and annuity policies for high-net-worth and institutional clients and has offices in Delaware, Florida, Switzerland, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands.

The Bermuda regulator imposed the civil penalties on the companies for failing to apply customer due diligence and enhanced due diligence, and failing to monitor business relationships.

The companies also did not comply with Bermuda’s Proceeds of Crime (Anti-Money Laundering & Anti-Terrorist Financing) Regulations in other areas, including the timing of verification; outsourcing; record-keeping; compliance officer, anti-money laundering/anti-terrorist financing (AML/ATF) policies and procedures; and independent audit functions, the authority said in a press release.

The regulator had required Crown Global to remediate these failings by 31 July 2019 but this “was not completed to the satisfaction of the Authority within the timeframe”, the BMA said.

“The Authority views these breaches as serious because of their extent and duration, and because they demonstrated a weakness of the Companies’ internal AML/ATF controls.”

The authority said in determining the $400,000 fine it took into account the nature of the breaches as well as the companies’ cooperation and improved processes and procedures since the regulator’s on-site review.

Crown Global agreed to continue to implement enhanced controls going forward to ensure compliance. These controls represent an improvement over the previous controls and were implemented at significant cost, the authority said.

The BMA added that it found no evidence that the companies were involved or complicit in any money laundering or terrorist financing activities. The companies are now in compliance with the regulations.

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