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AG’s Chambers to Undergo Re-rating Process Following National Risk Assessment Workshops

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The Attorney General’s Chambers is preparing to start 2023 with renewed efforts to improve the island’s progress in fighting cross-border crimes risking national, regional, and international security.

Permanent Secretary Julianna Alfred says the department recently concluded a National Risk Assessment (NRA) workshop with stakeholders from the public and private sectors “and is preparing to undertake a re-rating process” following a related workshop held last month to improve the country’s ability to better fight money laundering, terrorist financing and countering the financing of weapons of mass destruction.

The workshop, held November 15-16 at the Bay Gardens Hotel, was attended by seventy-two (72) participants, who were sensitized about the NRA process and the World Bank Tool by presenters such as Mrs. Nathalie Dusauzay, Ms Ayanna Caesar and Ms Kozel Creese.

The PS explained that “participants joined six different teams, each examining a specific sector in Saint Lucia, including banking, non-profit organizations, legal persons, designated non-financial businesses and processes, and virtual asset service-providers.”

Attorney General Mr. Leslie Mondesir, in his opening remarks at last month’s workshop, set the stage by highlighting its national importance, also reinforcing the government’s commitment and support in the fight against money laundering, terrorist financing and countering the financing of weapons of mass destruction.

The Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) is a regional body that conducts evaluations across the Caribbean to determine a country’s compliance in combating money laundering, terrorist financing and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and the PS says “Saint Lucia will undergo its re-rating process following the publication of its Fourth-Round Mutual Evaluation by the CFATF in 2021.”

The NRA report, she says, “is a fundamental requirement of this process” and indicated that “a second workshop with these teams will be held in early 2023 to validate the new NRA.”

PS Alfred says, “The accuracy of the information provided will assist the government in allocating limited resources to its most vulnerable areas when addressing Saint Lucia’s threats and work with respect to money laundering and terrorist financing.”

As part of the re-rating process, she explained, “Saint Lucia will also sign a Memorandum of Understanding with competent authorities…”

These will include the Attorney General’s Office, Director of Public Prosecutor’s Office, Royal Saint Lucia Police Force, Customs and Excise Department, Inland Revenue Department, Financial Intelligence Authority, Financial Services Regulatory Authority, Eastern Caribbean Central Bank to enhance issues of coordination, cooperation in sharing of information to strengthen the existing Anti Money Laundering/Counter Financing Terrorism /Counter Proliferation Financing controls.

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