Mission Statement

Our Mission is to effectively detect and deter money laundering and financing of terrorism, in collaboration with local law enforcement, regulators and international counterparts, thereby contributing towards a safe and stable financial, social and economic environment.

Current FIU News

The President of the Republic of Seychelles Mr. James Michel has formally appointed Mr. Phillip Moustache, as the new Director, Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), following an advertised competition open to persons with citizenship of Seychelles. Mr. Moustache, was previously Compliance Director FIU, and joined at the inaugural launch of the FIU in 2006, from the Central Bank of Seychelles. Mr. Moustache has a distinguished public sector career representing the FIU both at home and abroad. The appointment takes effect from the 26th September 2016

Notes:
1. Section 17 (3) Anti-Money Laundering Act 2006 (as amended) provides for the appointment of a Director FIU by the President.
2. Section 17 (7) Anti-Money Laundering Act 2006 (as amended) states that the Director shall be responsible to the Board of the Central Bank for the performance of the functions of the FIU



  • A series of sensitisation sessions on Money Laundering and Counteracting the Financing of Terrorism with the Seychelles Corporate Service Providers on 21, 22, 28 & 29 of July 2016, at the training unit of the Central Bank.



  • An FIU sensitisation session with the Bar Association of Seychelles on "Money Laundering and Counteracting the Financing of Terrorism" is scheduled to take place on Friday 26th August 2016 at the Palais de Justice.



  • From the 12th -16th September 2016, specialist training is being provided to enforcement agencies and prosecutors in the Seychelles by the Asset Recovery Inter-Agency Network Southern Africa ( ARINSA),in the confiscation of assets emanating from the proceeds of crime and money laundering. While the FIU has the primary enforcement role for Seychelles, others agencies attending include the Police, NDEA, SRC, AG's Office, Courts in what is a cross-agency approach in asset confiscation. The Acting Director, FIU, Finbarr O' Leary indicated at the opening of the training that it was about "the national inter-agency support, the co-ordination, while understanding respective roles, responsibilities and the team working opportunities the ARINSA/UN training and learning presents, with the overall aim of depriving criminals of the proceeds of crime". The main presenters are Mr. Alexander Mills, UK Barrister and Senior Lecturer, Mr. Fitz-Roy Drayton, Adviser AML UNODC/ARINSA, Mr. Kodjo Attisso, AML/CFT UNODC Regional Advisor.

    Note:
    1. Seychelles was formally admitted as a member of the Asset Recovery Inter-Agency Network Southern Africa (ARINSA) in June 2016. ARINSA is sponsored by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), UK Aid, United States of America.
    2. ARINSA is a multi-agency informal network between participating countries , to exchange information, model legislation and country laws in asset forfeiture, confiscation and money laundering, as well as providing training opportunities for both asset agents and prosecutors.
    3. There is currently an National Risk Assessment of Seychelles on Money Laundering/Terrorist Financing, facilitated by the World Bank, which should have the work completed by end of year.
    4. During 2017, Seychelles will be subject to an FATF Mutual Evaluation, with the Seychelles hosting the ESAAMLG Plenary in August 2018.
    5. The key asset enforcement legislation in Seychelles is the Anti-Money Laundering Act 2006 (as amended), Proceeds of Crime (Civil Confiscation) Act 2008.



  • On the 26th September 2016, the competent authorities of the Republic of Seychelles (represented by the Seychelles FIU) and the Kingdom of Belgium (represented by the Belgium FIU), signed a memorandum of understanding in a spirit of co-operation and mutual interest, to facilitate the investigation and prosecution of persons suspected of money laundering and criminal activity related to money laundering or terrorism financing. It states that the Authorities will jointly arrange, consistent with the legislation of their respective countries, acceptable procedures of communication and will consult each other with the purpose of the implementing the Memorandum. The Authorities are under no obligation to give assistance if this would prejudice ongoing judicial proceedings concerning the same facts to which the request is related.

    Notes:
    1. The legal provision to enter into an MOU Agreement with an FIU in another country is provided for under section 16A (2) (b) Anti-Money Laundering Act 2006 (as amended).
    2. Seychelles FIU is a member of the Egmont Group of FIU's since July 2013.
    3. The Egmont Group of FIU’s recognized the importance of international cooperation in the fight against money laundering and financing of terrorism. A group of Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) met at the Egmont Arenberg Palace in Brussels, Belgium, and decided to establish an informal network of FIUs to promote international co-operation. Now known as the Egmont Group of Financial Intelligence Units, the Egmont Group of FIUs meet regularly to find ways to promote the development of FIUs and to cooperate, especially in the areas of information exchange, training and the sharing of expertise (www.egmontgroup.org).
    4. The Seychelles has signed other MOU's (12) since 2013 with Angola, Kenya, Japan, Madagascar, Mauritius, Namibia, Panama, Russia, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
    5. An MOU is planned between Seychelles and Ethiopia during 2016



  • Seychelles was represented at the Eastern and Southern African Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG) Plenary meeting in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe between (29th August - 2nd September 2016). The Seychelles delegation comprised of representatives from FIU, Ministry of Finance, Central Bank, where the Government was represented by the Seychelles Ambassador to South Africa Mr. Claude Morel.
    Seychelles participated in a number of key working group meetings, inter alia, the Mutual Evaluation of Zimbabwe (where an FIU Officer formed a key part of the ESAAMLG Assessment Team), Technical Assistance & Training, Heads of FIU's, Risk Compliance, Mutual Evaluations, Work Programme of ESAAMLG Secretariat. Seychelles FIU made a presentation on "Intergency Co-operation on Money Laundering/Terrorist Financing: The Seychelles Experience" to the FIU Working Group.
    In addition, the Central Bank of Seychelles and FIU made a key presentation on "Seychelles experience of De-Risking in the Offshore Sector" to the ESAAMLG Public /Private Sector Dialogue.

    The key decisions taken that has an impact on Seychelles were:
    1. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Mutual Evaluation of Seychelles, to be undertaken by ESAAMLG, will be from June - December 2017.
    2. The ESAAMLG Plenary Meeting will be held in Seychelles during late August 2018. This is a major logistical exercise with the large number of countries and delegates including a Council of Ministers final day meeting. A memo has been prepared for the Government to consider the strategic planning decisions required for 2018.
    3. Agreement by COMESA on FIU sponsorship funding for certain international training events for 2016 (e.g. OECD Training on Financial Investigation)
    4. Agreement with United Nations (UN) on providing technical training to Seychelles in 2017, in the areas of UN Resolution Sanctions and applicability, for both the public sector and industry.
    5. Principal Agreement by IMF to invite Seychelles Regulatory Agencies to participate in Regulatory Training on AML/CFT from 2016-2017.

    Notes:
    1. See ESAAMLG www.esaamlg.org



  • Between the 19th-23rd September 2016, a mission from Eritrea, comprising Heads of Customs, Police and Justice (legal) visited Seychelles FIU, sponsored by COMESA under the EU/MASE Programme, which is focused on anti-piracy cum AML/CFT issues. The primary focus of the visit was to get an understanding of the role and composition of the Seychelles FIU - a hybrid agency (dealing with both civil and criminal AML/CFT matters) - with a view to planning and setting up a formal FIU structure in Eritrea. The week long visit included FIU presentations on Compliance, Regulatory, Assets, Legal and Registry. In addition, there was learnings taken from capacity building within the FIU and a future reviewed structure was outlined.
    On Friday 23rd September, a meeting took place with Head of Governance, Peace and Security, COMESA, FIU Management and the Mission Delegates. The feedback generally was positive from the mission delegates on providing practical information on the future setting-up up of an FIU Agency. The mission followed on a very successful COMESA Inter Agency Conference in Lusaka, Zambia, in June 2016, that included representatives from Seychelles (FIU, Police, SRC), and included delegates from all the COMESA countries, including Interpol, Lyon.

    Notes:
    1. COMESA = Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (see www.comesa.int)
    2. EU MASE Programme (www.eeas.europa.eu) EU fight against piracy Under the 10th European Development Fund, the regional Maritime Security Programme (MASE) will support the implementation of Eastern and Southern Africa - Indian Ocean Regional Strategy and Action Plan, which was adopted in October 2010 in Mauritius to fight piracy and promote maritime security by strengthening the capacity of the region. The EU is supporting the implementation of the regional strategy with approximately €37 million, mainly to develop a strategy to tackle piracy on land in Somalia; enhance judicial capabilities to arrest, transfer, detain and prosecute piracy suspects; address economic impact and financial flows related to piracy; and improve national and regional capacities in maritime security functions, including surveillance and coastguard functions.



  • An Overview of the Seychelles FIU

    The Seychelles Financial Intelligence Unit was first established as an independent government agency in June 2006. Like all other FIUs, it is statutorily empowered to receive and analyse a wide variety of financial and other information from diverse financial and non-financial sources. These include reports of unusual or suspicious transactions from domestic and international sources, including regulatory agencies, customs, tax, immigration, and law enforcement. The Seychelles FIU also has two other key statutory responsibilities.
  • First, it monitors, trains, and enforces compliance with AML/CFT obligations by a broad range of reporting entities (including financial institutions and non-financial businesses/professions like lawyers and real estate agents).
  • Secondly, the Seychelles FIU is also an asset recovery unit, with statutory responsibility for taking Court action to deprive criminals of the profits generated by their crime - either independently or in support of international partners like Interpol.

  • The Seychelles FIU could be described as a hybrid agency dealing with both civil and criminal matters in ML/TF.

    As set out below, a key task of any FIU is to analyse the information it receives to uncover evidence of possible money laundering (ML) and FT activity. The effective operation of the FIU is therefore an essential element of successful AML/CFT efforts, but it also contributes to broader law enforcement objectives. Because FIUs are a central gathering point for analysing a broad range of domestic and foreign financial information, they can be particularly effective at uncovering patterns in complex financial transactions that point to possible financial crime. To the extent that the predicate (underlying) crime for money laundering is itself a financial crime, such as fraud, the FIU plays a double role in investigating both offences.

    The FIU can also play an important role in uncovering financial crime in cases where the profits from that crime have not (or not yet) been laundered, for example where a bank or other financial institution is a direct victim or perpetrator of a fraud.

    Key legislation in Seychelles includes:,

  • Anti-Money Laundering Act, 2006 (as amended);
  • Anti-Money Laundering Regulations, 2012;
  • Proceeds of Crime (Civil Confiscation) Act, 2008;
  • Prevention of Terrorism Act, 2004;
  • Prevention of Terrorism (Implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolutions on Suppression of Terrorism) Regulations, 2015.

  • LEGISLATION

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    Publications


    Guidelines/Procedures for reporting entities in the Seychelles on Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism

    FIU Guidelines/Procedures for Reporting Entities Seychelles June 2015).National Strategy 2015 2018

    NATIONAL STRATEGY ON ANTI-MONEY LAUNDERING AND FINANCING OF TERRORISM

    WEB_NationalCommittee_AML_CFT Strategy 2015_2018

    1. The Republic vs. Hubert Terence Alphonse & Ors [2016] SCSC 341

    On 20 May 2016, the Seychelles Supreme Court convicted Hubert Terence Alphonse, a Seychelles citizen, of money laundering, in addition to making an order for the confiscation of assets of USD390,000 (or SCR5.1M), which the court was satisfied had been derived from the benefit of criminal conduct.

    Background:
    In July 2014, around USD100,000 in cash was seized at export at Seychelles International Airport by the National Drugs Enforcement Authority (NDEA) from Mr. Alphonse, who was unable to satisfactorily account for the source of the funds. The officers had reasonable grounds for suspecting that the monies were either directly or indirectly the proceeds of, or intended for use in, drug trafficking Following a detailed assets investigation involving the NDEA, Police, FIU and the Attorney General’s Office, the Court granted a Restraint Order, where the following assets were taken into control by the FIU pending the outcome of the criminal case against Mr. Alphonse:

  • Twelve motor vehicles
  • One plot of land, and
  • Monies held in six bank accounts

  • In May 2016, Mr. Alphonse pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court to the charge of money laundering, contraryto section 3 Anti-Money Laundering Act 2006 (as amended) and the Court imposed:

  • A fine of SCR 50,000 (approx. USD 3,850)
  • An Order that the money (USD 100,000 or equivalent equal to SCR 1,300,000) that had been originally seized in 2014, be forfeited to the State with immediate effect, along with;
  • An Order of forfeiture on the proceeds of the confiscated assets (USD390,000 or SCR5.1M)

  • Notes:

  • Under sections 38 & 40 Anti-Money Laundering Act 2006 (as amended), the Courts of Seychelles can determine that a convicted person has benefited from criminal conduct to a certain amount, and order that person to pay that amount. This is known as a pecuniary penalty order.
  • A Restraint Order is provided for under section 27 Anti-Money Laundering Act 2006 (as amended). The order ensured that the named person could not reduce or dissipate their assets prior to any trial, (or in this case a guilty plea and the making of the pecuniary penalty order).
  • In July 2016, the FIU disposed of the twelve cars at an advertised public auction.



  • The FIU Seychelles recently transferred EURO 495,000 to the Oslo Tax Office, following a year long investigation involving Norwegian Law Enforcement and the FIU Seychelles. Monies had been deposited in a Seychelles bank in 2015 emanating from the proceeds of a tax fraud in Norway. The bank account monies were ‘frozen’ by the FIU and were subject to a number of court orders of the Seychelles Supreme Court. The court were notified of the formal agreement between Norway and Seychelles law enforcement agencies and approved the repatriation of the monies to Norway.
    This case demonstrates the international aspect of money laundering and the key role to be played by the co-operation of agencies with a common purpose of depriving criminals of the proceeds of crime.


    Notes:

    Money Laundering/Terrorist Financing legislation in Seychelles:
    1. Anti-Money Laundering Act 2006 (as amended)
    2. Proceeds of Crime (Civil Confiscation) Act 2006
    3. Prevention of Terrorism Act 2004
    4. Prevention of Terrorism (Implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolutions on Suppression of Terrorism) Regulations, 2015



    Financial Stability Committee (FSC) holds first quarterly meeting

    International Investigation into 1Malaysia Development berhad (1MDb)

    FIU reflects on 10 years of operation

    FIU welcomes the World Bank to Seychelles

    1. United Nations Consolidated Sanctions List

    https://www.un.org/sc/suborg/en/sanctions/un-sc-consolidated-list

    The Consolidated Sanctions List includes all individuals and entities subject to sanctions measures imposed by the Security Council. The inclusion of all names on one Consolidated Sanctions List is to facilitate the implementation of the measures, and neither implies that all names are listed under one regime, nor that the criteria for listing specific names are the same. For each instance where the Security Council has decided to impose sanctions in response to a threat, a Security Council Committee manages the sanctions regime. Each sanctions committee established by the United Nations Security Council therefore publishes the names of individuals and entities listed in relation to that committee as well as information concerning the specific measures that apply to each listed name.


    2. UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR)

    The United Nations adopted a UNSC Resolution 2253 (2015) pursuant to Chapter VII of the UN Charter to expand the sanctions framework to include ISIL. Please find the attached UNSCR 2253 with the relevant paragraphs, for short reference

    http://www.un.org/press/en/2015/sc12168.doc.htm

    “24. Highlights the importance of strong relationships with the private sector in counteracting the financing of terrorism and call upon Member States to engage with financial institutions and share information on terrorist financing (TF) risks to provide greater context for their work in identifying TF activity related to ISIL, Al-Qaida, and associated individuals, groups, undertakings and entities, and to promote stronger relationships between governments and the private sector in counteracting terrorist financing.

    25” Recognizes the importance of information sharing within and between governments to effectively counter the financing of terrorism, calls upon Member States to continue exercising vigilance over relevant financial transactions and improve information-sharing capabilities and practices within and between governments through multiple authorities and channels, including law enforcement, intelligence, security services, and financial intelligence units, and also calls upon Member States to improve integration and utilization of financial intelligence with other types of information available to national governments to more effectively counter the terrorist financing threats posed by ISIL, Al-Qaida, and associated individuals, groups, undertakings and entities;

    Contact Us

    Postal Address

    FINANCIAL INTELLIGENCE UNIT
    P. O. Box 701,
    Victoria,
    Seychelles
    Tel: [+248] 4 282098/ 4 282076
    Fax: [+248] 4 225 002
    Email: enquiries@gov.sc