Police drill guns raid cops 311.
(photo credit: Israel Police)
Senior Justice Ministry officials praised Israel’s progress on Monday in
developing legal structures and law enforcement methods for combating terror
financing and money laundering.
Speaking at the opening session of the
10th Experts Meeting on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Typologies,
Finance Ministry General- Director Guy Rothkopf said Israel has developed
“advanced ways to combat terror financing and money laundering,” both in terms
of legislation and law enforcement techniques.
These include the freezing
and confiscation of assets of those convicted of money laundering offenses,
This is the first time Israel is hosting the international
meeting, which is held under the auspices of MONEYVAL, the Council of Europe’s
expert committee on evaluating anti-money laundering and terror funding methods.
Israel joined MONEYVAL as an active observer in 2006.
from 30 countries and national authorities are attending the meeting in Tel
Aviv, and will examine specific strategies to confront and combat terror
financing and money laundering, according to Moneyval’s executive-secretary,
These include the impact of legal instruments available to
state prosecutors and of closures and confiscations of criminal proceeds and
The International Monetary Fund noted recently that both money
laundering and terror financing activities exploit financial vulnerabilities to
undermine the integrity of financial institutions and states.
Monday’s conference session, Ringguth warned that the diverse tactics of those
financing terror pose legal and practical challenges for
“Those financing terror are creative, and national
authorities need to keep one step ahead of them,” said
According to Ringguth, the global financial crisis has created
new challenges for combating terror financing, as one of the major ways in which
criminals launder funds – trade-based money laundering in cash-intensive
economies – has intensified.
Paul Landes, head of the Israel Money
Laundering and Terror Financing Prohibition Authority, part of the Justice
Ministry, said Israel has made advances in recent years in ways to combat money
laundering and terror funding, and has cooperated with its international
counterparts including on a project to combat money laundering via Internet
Israel also has considerable expertise in the NGO sector,
Terror financing, which relies heavily on legal funding
sources, often uses funds raised by nonprofit groups and NGOS, including
Landes told The Jerusalem Post
on Monday that the
Counter-terrorism Bill, which the Justice Ministry’s Department of Legislative
Consulting has worked on for the past five years, would also help Israel combat
The bill passed its first reading in the Knesset in
August and is waiting to be debated in the Knesset’s Constitution, Law and
Justice Committee before going forward for its second and third readings in
Knesset, Landes said.
Landes also noted that the Counter-terrorism Bill
includes new mechanisms to designate organizations as terror groups.
2008 and 2009, Israel designated 85 groups as terrorist organizations, according
to Article 2 of the Prohibition of Terror Financing Law, and in line with the
designation of these groups by the UN Security Council and the US government.