20211207 We get the governments we choose or fail to choose against, not those we deserve.

I often wonder why I am not featured by the anti-establishment media that attack governments, “tax havens” and so on and so forth but, today, something I read brought it into focus:

I am not anti-establishment. I believe in the future of good government and in encouraging good governance and appropriate policies, not for the noisiest but for all.

I chide and complain and hector not to be destructive but with an optimism that, one day, things will be better; that governments will represent all their people; that countries will, once more, be allowed to exercise sovereignty; that the financially and ethically corrupt and self-serving will be booted out of power; that minorities are heard and respected but do not set the agenda for all; that democracy is sacrosanct – and effective – and that laws are simple and interpreted by experienced and wise judges so as to provide the last line of defence against autocracy and over-reach.

This is why I make a noise: it’s not for me: I’m reaching the end of my career and potential for influence. It’s for you and our children and our children’s children.

What I read was a promo for an event organised by a coalition of activist groups and amongst the speakers was a name I know well – a man who has spent much of his working life in the service of the establishment that the activists purport to support while pursuing a range of purposes of which stability is not one.

Look at the world, in every direction. Is it really going where we want it to go? And if not, how can we redirect it?

We get the governments we choose or fail to choose against; we do not get the governments we deserve.

We get the laws and regulations that we fail to argue against.

Then we moan.

It’s time to take back the agenda from pressure groups and “activists, ” bad politicians and power-hungry bureaucrats.

It’s time to make the right noises. For the right reasons.

It’s time for loud optimism and constructive recommendations.


20211117 To add speed, add lightness: applying engineering principles to financial crime risk and compliance.

Listen to this blog at Financial Crime Broadcasting

Let’s start with a statement that will upset the bubble people who pay attention only to those of like mind and will be applauded by those who truly understand the issue of financial crime risk and compliance both from the point of view of practitioners and in legislatures and regulators.

The reason that financial crime risk and compliance doesn’t work effectively is that it’s over-complicated and flabby. It is, in every sense of the term, ″not fit for purpose.″ There is, quite simply, just too much, too much detail and too much that is is counter-productive and counter-intuitative.

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The other 9/11: lessons in compliance and risk management

This article was first published by Complinet / Thompson Reuters on 29 April 2012.

Shortly after the beginning of the working day on September 11 an aircraft crashed, killing all on board. But this was not September 11, 2001; it was 10 years earlier and arguably should have had a much greater effect on compliance and risk management than the events of 2001. This and other cases demonstrate the often under-emphasised difference between external (i.e., regulatory or legal) compliance and internal (i.e., policies and procedures) compliance.

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20211019 India’s Supreme Court grapples with confiscation and ancestral property.


Today, I’m going to look at a fascinating case that is progressing through the courts in India. We don’t yet have a judgment and are relying on media reports and the judgment in the lower court but it is so important that it’s worth being aware of it – and its implications.

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20210921 Cases that won’t make the news and the launch of compliance officers’ training packages.


I’ve a round-up of some stories that haven’t made the news but which give
pause for thought.

The FBI’s embarrassing plea.
The strange case of municipal bonds fraud.
Will a case relating to a Royal Will at last give transparency to Deferred
Prosecution Agreements?
Training: a new package for compliance teams with CPD and a certification.

Read more

20210915 Q.When is a ″threat not a threat? A: when it’s a risk.

20210915 Q.When is a ″threat not a threat? A: when it’s a risk.

We hear a lot about ″threat assessments″ in relation to financial crime (that is crime for which the primary activity is dealing with money). We hear about the ″threat″ that various form of economic crime (that is crime for which the primary objective is to make money) pose.

But when someone focuses on the ″threat″, he has come late to the party.

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20210907 Is it a spoon, a lining, a teapot? No, it’s an anniversary.

2021 marks the 25th Anniversary of the publication of my first book, How not to be a money launderer.

I’ve been wedded to the first edition of the first book for what would, if it were a she, be our Silver Anniversary.

So, I thought, let’s do something about that.

This is what I’ve done…

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20210902 Zip it, or don’t: the latest in my techy saga

I am sitting at home building things. The things I am building is websites. The past month has been a flurry of activity as I have built several interlocking sites that all serve a discrete purpose and one that, as a kind of Group site, also has an e-commerce back end.

That’s where, in the tone of a 19th Century maiden, I found myself undone.

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20210813 Uncommon law, equity and justice; or Denning’s Revenge.

We all have our heroes. Amongst mine is English judge Lord Denning.

But hero worship needs to be tempered with a realisation that even something good can lead to something bad when people who don’t understand what they have use it in the wrong way.

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20210806 Money in a bank: whose is it?

The essence of banking is that a bank is in a fiduciary position in relation to its customers and that deposits are, in effect if not in law, held on behalf of account holders in a form of trust.

In short, money in the bank belongs to the account holder.

What if it doesn’t?

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20210801 Money laundering laws are useless; regulations are counter-productive. Governments think more of the same is the answer.

NMC big beard

You don’t need me to tell you that the cost-benefit equation of counter-money laundering laws and regulations is tipped way too far in the wrong direction, nor that the laws and regulations we have are onerous and infective, that the original plan, that ordinary people would watch out for dodgy activity and report it has been lost under a weight of bureaucracy.

You don’t need me to tell you that because you already know it.

The thing is, it’s a far from new problem. And supranational bodies, trade associations, legislators and regulators are hounding an already exhausted fox into a hole where the bites will cause irreparable harm, if they have not already done so.


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20210722 Hello world, all over again. Welcome to the new countermoneylaundering.com .

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

22 July 2020

It’s taken a while to move my blog from countermoneylaundering.com to, er, countermoneylaundering.com.

You don’t need to know why – it’s all to do with the tech we’ve used for years becoming obsolete in a few months. But if you want to know, read on.

Like literally tens of thousands of website owners, I’ve held out, hoping that the developers will relent.

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20210614 The place of unthought thoughts.


Today I’m writing about white holes, “The Place of Unthought Thoughts.”

This is not unknown unknowns, it’s about the things we know about but don’t want to know more about, where our quest for understanding reaches the end of our willingness to enquire.

If books, etc. can have “out-takes” this is one of mine, a section that ended up on the cutting room floor, so to speak.

This BLOG/cast includes part of my research into suspicion but didn’t find its way into the book or the courses. It is highly relevant as it explains some of the background to the research and some of the thinking that went into the final (for now) product.



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20210510 Virtual Crime is Real Crime

Hello and welcome to this blog (10 May 2021) which will be emailed as my newsletter and recorded as a BLOG / cast.

Today is the day that the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime starts a meeting about what it terms “cybercrime.” The meeting will start with a discussion around what should be included within the definition of “cybercrime.”



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20210419 RegTech: Knowledge, Belief and Suspicion and the trap of Wilful Blindness.

I first wrote about wilful blindness in 1996 in my book “How not to be a money launderer” and I said then that it was destined to be the central point on which all counter-money laundering laws would hang. I wasn’t wrong then and I’m not wrong now.

To understand it, we’ll take a quick romp through knowledge, belief and suspicion and then why machines cannot and for the foreseeable future will not be able to identify suspicion.

Blog / cast: Financial Crime Broadcasting



20210330 The big lie: Noo Finance and the confidence trick by FinTechs and regulators.

This is going to make a lot of people very angry.

Sadly, those that are going to be angry are those that have been found out.

Those that should be angry – the consumers who have been misled and the tax payers who have supported the rampant charge into FinTech support by regulators and, even, the banks who have had their business models and even management plans disrupted, in the true sense of the word, by the host of millennial-targeting banks that pretended they were not banks, supported in that subterfuge by regulators – are not going to be angry.



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20210321 – An inadvertent blog

I thought I had nothing current to say, as I’m busy readying myself for the relaunch of Quick To Learn more in a few days. But it was time to write a newsletter, in particular drawing attention to quicktolearnmore.com and a couple of things at financialcrimetraining.com

As I wrote the tailpiece, it turned into an inadvertent article that works as a blog. I’m not going to BLOG / cast it. Here, in its original form including the ads 🙂



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20210318 Case studies update, Quick to Learn More progress, BLOG / casts proving popular

Updates from Financial Crime Risk and Compliance Training and from Financial Crime Broadcasting.



Case Studies: we’ve added two new case studies in the past week. One, an insurance fraud, is perhaps one of the most ridiculous cases – and the most tragic – in our collection.

See https://learning.financialcrimeriskandcompliancetraining.com/courses/financial-crime-case-studies-criminal-cases

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20210224 What’s in a name?

The blogcast is at www.financialcrimebroadcasting.com.

Hello and welcome to The Financial Crime Risk and Compliance blogcast with me, Nigel Morris-Cotterill.

This episode is published the 24 February 2021

It is available in text on my blog at www.countermoneylaundering.com.



In this episode:

1. The impending global crisis for small businesses trading with EU customers and suppliers and a shedload of work for their bankers and others.

2. Transferwise becomes Wise. Is it a wise choice?

3. Revocation v repeal: a US crypto company has paid a penalty under a law that doesn’t exist because the US government said it had to.

4. Goodbye blogcast, hello BLOG/cast and the end of the line for our original graphic.

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20210211 Of Bulls and Bias.

Hello and welcome to The Financial Crime Risk and Compliance blogcast with me, Nigel Morris-Cotterill.

This episode is published the 11 February 2021.

It is available in text on my blog at www.countermoneylaundering.com and as a blogcast at financialcrimebroadcasting.com

In this episode:

1 Goodbye Rat. Hello Bull.

2. OFAC’s fuzzy logic

3. [un] conscious bias : it looks simple but it isn’t.

4. How to not make a fortune.

5. Corruption as explained to Sherlock Holmes.

6. The last word on rats and bulls.





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20210127 Radiogate.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

This is the first blog of 2021 and the first I have released with a newsletter, this blog and the blogcast all on the same day.

In this issue:

Out-going PoTUS and the time-bomb he left behind
The media myth about the USA’s latest legislation
Sherlock Holmes and the money launderers.
London’s financial crime kingpin in the 1700s.



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20210123 I miss gai mai bau…..

I have a newsletter in preparation but there’s stuff still to do. But, sometimes, it’s worth jotting a few notes mainly for myself but perhaps of some interest or use to others. In any case, there’s a thing about writing. If you can’t write what you want, write anything, no matter how random or rubbish, to get the “I’m a writer” part of the brain going. So, here are meanderings (and that bit was written after the rest of the page so it’s worked. Ish). And if you think it’s a waste of your time, stop reading. Or learn the technique because it might help you when…. Read on to find out when.

It all started when I was looking at the visitors’ logs for this website.

Actually, it all started when I got up this morning and wanted something in particular for lunch. That was impossible, and that’s why I was looking at the visitors’ logs.

(There will be no blogcast of this article because it’s got nothing to do with financial crime!)

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20201216 Morris-Cotterill: GOAT – and I can prove it.

Wednesday, 16 December, 2020 – 02:00

One of the most quoted sayings of Sun Tzu (“No plan survives the first contact with the enemy”) isn’t by Sun Tzu. But there is at least some evidence that an ear-biting, wife-beating boxer said “no plan survives the first punch in the face” (although even that is told in several different versions). So I feel entirely justified in coming up with my own variant on the original misquote.

No plan survives the first contact with the Year of the Rat (or 2020 – take your pick)

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20201221 My end-of-year newsletter : suspicious activity reports; failure to regulate lawyers and more

NMC big beard In this last newsletter before whatever Christmas will mean this year and, indeed the last newsletter for 2020, let’s have a look at just two of the several live issues in relation to financial crime risk and compliance.

But first, welcome to the several hundreds of new subscribers since my previous newsletter and to those joining us for the first time from our e-learning platform.

You, too, can sign up to receive this once a month (ish) newsletter in plain text (no html) in your inbox. Click to visit Financial Crime Broadcasting

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20201118 Source of funds, source of wealth and unexplained wealth.

When Des Hellicar-Bowman referred to a 19th Century book, “The Theory of the Leisure Classes” by Thorstein Veblen, I knew it would be good because Mr Hellicar-Bowman and I take a similar view of financial crime in that it the only way to understand it and therefore to effectively counter it is to make a broad study of everything to do with it, including those things that appear to be only peripherally relevant.

The book is obliquely applicable to financial crime but it is directly relevant to how we view assets and source of funds and source of wealth. Here’s what I found….

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20201020 Seizures and confiscations and why you should challenge everything.

Tuesday, 20 October, 2020 – 06:31

Good morning. I seem to be having some difficulty working out how long a month is, as it seems that my last monthly newsletter was on 25th August. That’s as close to two months ago as no matter.

In that two months, much has happened in the world and a lot of it has a direct, or indirect, impact on the world of financial crime risk and compliance.

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20200120 The wild world of financial crime risk and compliance – where certainty is a gamble and uncertainty is playing it safe.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill
Monday, 20 January, 2020 – 01:15

It’s the everyday challenge for the financial crime risk officer.

There is something he’s not satisfied with but he can’t prove it – it’s his experience, what some call his “gut reaction” that says “this doesn’t stack up. We shouldn’t do this business.”

But there are reasons why the business should be done.

There is a fundamental imbalance and, incredibly, a fundamental irony.

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202020200927 The FinCEN Files – misleading the public and benefiting from criminal conduct

Sunday, 27 September, 2020 – 06:34

Financial Crime Broadcasting dot com blog casts There is, at present, a state of excitement amongst the media, some financial crime consultants and some politicians in response to what they are being told is public opinion.

The so-called FinCEN Files were heavily telegraphed in a media blitz more akin to the launch of a Hollywood film that has cost a fortune but the result isn’t as good as was hoped.

In the USA and the UK, mainstream media outlets have published a series of articles that, they say, arise because of what it has found in documents obtained from the USA’s Financial Intelligence Unit, FinCEN.

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20200825 Busy Bees or Busy Work?

Financial Crime Broadcasting dot com blog casts It′s been a busy few weeks in financial crime. One has to wonder how much of it is pent-up action that people have found ways to do since the world began working from its back-bedroom or the kitchen table and how much of it is people trying to keep busy so they look as if they are achieving something when they haven′t found ways to perform their normal duties effectively.

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20200701 Wirecard : the FCA’s freezing of assets.

Financial Crime Broadcasting dot com blog casts The announcement without warning that the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority was freezing assets of German FinTech Wirecard has caused consternation.

But while the fall-out has been severe for many individuals, it was both temporary and fits the profile of interventions. There were also good and prudent reasons for it.

Here’s why.

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20200618 Of unlocking lockdowns and nasty people: My Newsletter

Thursday, 18 June, 2020 – 07:20

Good morning, good afternoon or good evening depending on where you are. Sitting at 101 degrees East, I’m roughly in the middle of the day for half of the world and in the tail end of the previous day for the other half.

That’s an example of how we tend to think in a very localised way, even when we are acting on a much bigger stage. But there’s more….

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20200614 Malaysia can rescue Formula One’s 2020 season. This is how.

Sunday, 14 June, 2020 – 06:06

In the past week, we have learned that the 2020 F1 Grands Prix in Singapore, Suzuka, Sao Paulo, Austin and Baku will not, or probably will not, take place. take place. We have already lost the first half of the season including the much awaited Vietnamese Grand Prix. The underlying reason is that there remains great fear of the spread of the CoVid-19 virus and such fear is not misplaced.

But there is one place where ground can be made up quickly, easily and even cheaply.

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20200520 – making money the old fashioned way

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

The title is a pun. Well, probably not a pun, actually. It’s taking a statement that isn’t ironic nor sarcastic, an expression that’s more term of art than literal, and – because it’s English and we can do this kind of thing – twisting it into something with a single-use, throwaway, purpose.


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20200520 Of whitened teeth, a plague of rats and much, much, more

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Sometimes there’s writers’ block and other times there’s, well, something more akin to diarrhoea of the verbiage persuasion.

This rambling rant is the latter. My mind was having a free-thought day, my fingers were on the keyboard, here it is in its unadulterated, unpolished, form.

There are big questions and observations that might or might not be connected but most of all there’s this – our current situation has drawn attention to many issues that have arisen through complacency, ignorance or, even, attempts to adopt the “someone else’s problem” approach to management.

Chickens, meet roost.


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20200518 You’ve got to be kidding me – spot the difference in these texts.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

In 1996, in How not to be a money launderer, I wrote the following:

“Bank Leu is a legitimate Swiss bank with an office in Luxembourg. In 1993, it was convicted in a district court in California of laundering drugs money originating in Columbia. Bank Leu had no branches nor even representative offices in the USA, in fact it had no presence there at all.”

In 2003, another author, with the backing of a large publisher, wrote

“Bank Leu is a legitimate bank in Europe: it has no representation in the United States of any kind, or at least did not in 1993. … that in that year it was convicted of laundering Colombia drugs money in a California district court.”

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20200509 US Courts, crypto-assets and the blindingly obvious

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

A recent spate of cases in the USA has, after the best part of a decade, concluded that crypto-assets are to be regarded as property.

Seriously: this is one of the simplest things to work out and courts – and legislatures – have been making a meal out of something that is blindingly obvious.

Yet, bizarrely, it’s not only US courts that are finding this difficult.

20200419 All that glisters is not silver – Rihan v Ernst and Young

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

In one of the worst kept secrets of recent times, the case of Rihan v EY Global and others has reached its first major milestone – a formal hearing before the English High Court. It’s all about money laundering, skulduggery and all that sexy stuff. But that’s just froth. The real meat of the Order comes in the far less seductive part of the case – the choice of venue and corporate responsibility for downstream malfeasance.

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20200421 Nigel’s Newsletter: in the face of lockdowns….

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

We’ve added around 1,000 subscribers since the last newsletter so, to you, thank you and to those who’ve been on the list for, in some cases, getting on for 20 years, thanks for your patience over the past few months while other things have taken priority.

20200310 Leading from the front

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

As I am putting to bed what might be the most ambitious project we will tackle for a while at financialcrimeriskandcompliancetraining.com , a course designed for teenagers and young people up to 24 years of age on avoiding being a victim of financial crime, one big issue has been added at the last minute – the range of conduct that criminals are adopting as their response to the coronavirus / CoVid-19 epidemic / pandemic. Across the world, there are more and more examples of conduct, both in both the physical and cyber worlds.

While doing that, I’ve been doing the final checks on the rest of the content including the so-called “county lines” problem are very valuable.

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20200310 Yes, I’m critical. It’s how I think.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

There are many things that make me shake my head and wonder how come the world is full of “experts” on things that are common sense.

Is there no common sense any longer? Are we moribund unless someone tells us what to do and, even, how to do it.

And does that stasis even extend to thinking?

Apparently, we now need to be taught about “critical thinking.”

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20200301 The ideas of March.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Romans blamed “The Ides of March” for the all kinds of things, mostly unpleasant. English myth talks about “mad March hares” which run around, aimlessly, in fields where they would normally hide.

But we can think of March as the month where we will see the first signs of spring (at least those of us above the equator can), half way from the longest night to the longest day and with shoots appearing and the first lambs of the season.

So, March is also a time of renewal – and perfect for fresh ideas, hence “The Ideas of March.”

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20200226 When the whole world has gone mad, only the sane look crazy


Nigel Morris-Cotterill

The world is mad. There is an overwhelming sense of a need to belong.

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20200202 At last – Quick, the next generation of money laundering training


Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Good grief. This blog has always been a bit sporadic but now it looks downright dilatory.

So, you’d think that, except for one post last month I’d slept the winter away, wouldn’t you?


There’s a story and this is the biggest milestone.

At least for now. There’s more to come.

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20191021 Pushing out the pushers.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Microsoft is pushing hard, and I use the term “pushing” deliberately.

It has turned the world into addicts for the product only it sells and it makes withdrawal difficult and, even, frightening.

MS is also providing purported advice while, well, pushing and using fear as its tool.

Today, my PC (along with millions of others I assume) woke with a splash screen telling me Windows 7 will soon be orphaned. It invites “learn more.” But all addictions can be beaten…

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20190913 I talked to a Millennial yesterday.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

I had put a CD into a crappy player, through an ancient and slowly fading Sony amp and some cheap speakers. It didn’t sound good but it sounded a bit better than previous times I’d played it. The reason for the experiment was simple: it sounds absolutely awful on my good stuff. All my good stuff. It even sounds awful on my PC speakers. Why?

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20190828 Reputational risk – first it’s one thing, then it’s another and now it’s both.

Wednesday, 28 August, 2019 – 11:54

When I first started working in money laundering risk management in the early 1990s, reputational risk was something that greatly exercised my mind: surely customers would walk away from financial and professional service providers associated with laundering. That didn’t happen.

Something else did.

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Tuesday, 20 November, 2018 – 05:38

The surprising news that Carlos Ghosn has been arrested on tax evasion charges in Japan and has already been turfed out of at least one of his senior positions in the Nissan-Mitsubishi-Renault triumvirate which he is widely regarded as having brought, in each case, back from the dead is worthy of comment, regardless of the eventual outcome of the investigation and charges.
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20181120 Where compliance fails and the Carlos Ghosn case

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

The surprising news that Carlos Ghosn has been arrested on tax evasion charges in Japan and has already been turfed out of at least one of his senior positions in the Nissan-Mitsubishi-Renault triumvirate which he is widely regarded as having brought, in each case, back from the dead is worthy of comment, regardless of the eventual outcome of the investigation and charges.

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20181106 – The blockchain and what financial crime risk officers need to know

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

The near-Messianic fascination with all things “blockchain” introduces a risk for financial crime risk officers. While the blockchain, as a part of a suite of technologies that work together can provide certain forms of security, there is a flip-side. The same security protocols can obscure information that FCROs would ordinarily expect to have as part of their routine KYC data.

What do FCROs/ MLROs / AML Risk Officers need to know?

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20180823 UK Government proposes central register for all enforceable contracts

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

The UK’s Law Commission plans an Ethereum-like contracts execution platform.

No problem so far.

But then it wants to go further and make all contracts of certain types executable only via the platform.

So while you won’t need to use the platform to buy a Mars Bar or to execute a will, you will need to use it for, amongst other things, a trust deed and a power of attorney, if the Law Commission succeeds.

It’s a serious assault on personal privacy, no matter what “safeguards” might be proposed or introduced.

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20180807 ASIC plans to place a supervisor inside banks. Good or not?

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Australia’s ASIC (Australian Securities and Investments Commission) has been, rightly, stung by the brutal criticism it has suffered during the The Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry.

Using the bizarre expression “regulatory capture” which sounds like another one of those phrases designed to attract media attention to the words not their meaning, ASIC’s Chairman, Mr James Shipton, told The Australian Broadcasting Corporation “We want to have our supervisory officers physically inside these financial institutions by the end of the month.” Is this a good, or even a new, idea?

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20180711 On the way to Manila and Taipei, something arises.

Wednesday, 11 July, 2018 – 12:15

I’m preparing for a trip to Manilla 24 – 27 July 2018 and Taipei from 30 July – 4th August 2018 and if anyone would like to book me to present an in-house seminar or briefing session during those times, check out the list of topics and let me know ASAP.
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20180606 Rough data is good enough to decide if there is suspicion.

Wednesday, 6 June, 2018 – 05:40

Late yesterday, I posted to LinkedIn a message about the way sound travels around the concrete canyons in Kuala Lumpur. I had tried to work out the location that a sound originated from but had fallen into helpless giggles when I realised that I could only calculate the position of the source if I had the location of the source. That, of course, was a circular argument and of no value to anyone.

Why, one might ask, would anyone bother?

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20180606 Rough data is good enough to decide if there is suspicion.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Late yesterday, I posted to LinkedIn a message about the way sound travels around the concrete canyons in Kuala Lumpur. I had tried to work out the location that a sound originated from but had fallen into helpless giggles when I realised that I could only calculate the position of the source if I had the location of the source.

That, of course, was a circular argument and of no value to anyone.

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20171207 The falsely accused contrarian and the bubble people.

Thursday, 7 December, 2017 – 13:01

This blog was originally published as ” OK. Call me a contrarian if you want but you are wrong.” with “The falsely accused contrarian and the bubble people.” as a subtitle. In February 2021, this was reversed when the blog was recorded for a BLOG/cast.

Listen to the BLOG/cast free: at Financial Crime Broadcasting .com

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20170926: My newsletter – Improving Suspicious Activity Reporting – HKG, SYD, MEL, (CGK)JKT, DXB, LON

Wednesday, 27 September, 2017 – 09:03

You know the old joke – you know when you are travelling too much when you refer to cities by their airport codes?

Well, yes, that’s exactly what I’m reduced to. Having just got home to Kuala Lumpur after KUL, CAN, HRB and return (delayed a day because the otherwise excellent China Southern cancelled one of my flights and gave me a key-ring to make up for it), I’m now setting up the schedules for the final (so far as I know) legs of my seminar tour.
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20170830 The Commonwealth Bank of Australia – sickness or symptom?

Wednesday, 30 August, 2017 – 05:55

When the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) story first appeared, I instructed World Money Laundering Report that we should not become involved in what would inevitably become a frenzy of speculation and ill-informed comment as consultants (of which I am, obviously, one) and media outlets vied to benefit their own profile, and to get website visits, while the story was hot. I wrote what amounted to a placeholder article .

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20170808 Nigel’s August 2017 Newsletter

Tuesday, 8 August, 2017 – 06:51


It’s been a long while since I did a personal newsletter to my 20,000 plus contacts. A lot’s been happening that isn’t work related and one of the things that got shoved aside has been this monthly note.

Let’s get started…

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20170529 The power of auto-suggestion

Monday, 29 May, 2017 – 05:58

I could go on for hours, days even, about how easy it is to use various techniques to manipulate the thoughts of a person who is targeted as a vehicle for financial crime. Hell, I do go on for hours, days even, about it when people pay me to present seminars that show them how their companies can avoid being a victim of such offences. But some of the most fun lessons are found when I, me, the one who knows, understands and communicates this stuff, falls victim…

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20170712 If it’s mundane, it’s mundane. Get over it.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Some people might argue that I’m a Luddite but nothing could be further from the truth.

I have long been an early adopter of new technology. What I am not is a follower of fashion.

And after a few days with what may be the worst car Mercedes have ever made, I’m even more convinced we need to stop the constant revision of things just so someone can put a “new” sticker on it.



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20170214 Comments to Complinet re De Risking and Watch Lists February 2017

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Following the case in which a bank dropped a mosque as a customer based on information in a watch list, I was contacted by Complinet, for which I am a consulting editor, and asked for an opinion on the general circumstances of financial institutions, watch lists and de risking in general. I was not invited to, and did not comment on, the specific case.

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20170116 You’d think publishing a website would be easy…..

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

The WWW didn’t really exist when I started using the internet.

We had bulletin boards, arcane chat room protocols, some weird techy stuff that allowed me to send e-mails to the USA from London if I routed them through Hong Kong (don’t ask, I can’t remember how I did it) and most communications revolved around what would today be called ecosystems, for example CompuServe and America On Line.

All the ingredients were present for social media but there was no integration.

The internet was for techies.

That soon changed, and we changed with it.

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20160112 How are the mighty fallen: a wonderful school is lost.

The William Rhodes Secondary Technical School in Chesterfield was often the school of choice, above the grammar school for those who passed their 11 plus examination. On the recommendation of my junior school headmaster, I went there: it was, he said “a school for individuals.” It was wonderful and when I had to move to another area, I was heartbroken. In the intervening years, things have changed. It’s sad.

Graphic: My blazer badge c.1965

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20161216 UN vote on Israel : there is a Father Christmas

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

It’s difficult to understand what happened at the end of the week before Christmas. Egypt’s resolution condemning illegal Israeli settlements in the Palestinian Territories was first delayed, then withdrawn after Israel pushed diplomatic buttons in Washington and found incoming President Trump to be an ally.

Then four countries put forward their own resolution and that was passed, because for the first time in a long time the USA did not exercise its veto to strike down a resolution critical of Israel’s illegal acts.

That the Resolution was passed is a very good thing.

But it’s toothless and Israel’s immediate response was to tell the UN it would not comply.

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20161107 I dare not watch, but I want to know what’s happening

Nigel Morris-Cotterill
Monday, 7 November, 2016 – 09:13

When I was young, and we had our first TV, I remember hiding behind the settee (I’m a Midlands lad, “sofas” were for pooftahs) when The Daleks appeared on Doctor Who. I remember my Aunt laughing as she came down from the “box room” where she was staying for a couple of days and banging the door into my feet which protruded. Now, rather older and, one hopes, rather wiser, I’m looking at my TV room and wondering if there’s space behind the sofa (see, I’m reconstructed) for me to hide while the results of the US presidential election are announced.


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20160808 Monday mornings: stranger dangers exist but not many.

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

I know: for the past x decades, anyone who says “I don’t like Mondays” is accused of plagiarism but it’s not true. I’m a lot older than that song and I’ve never liked Mondays. I can’t get the hang of Wednesday afternoons, either, although that’s for an entirely different reason.

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20160526 Brexit: the young should register to vote – but they should vote “Leave”

Thursday, 26 May, 2016 – 04:53

David Cameron, speaking in Japan where he is attending the G7 Summit, has said that the young, in Britain, should register to vote. He says it may be the most important vote of their lives and it is for them to decide what kind of country they want to live in. He’s exactly right.

And when they do, they should vote to leave the EU. This is why. And as someone who supported the “yes” vote in 1975, I start with a mea culpa.
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20160526 Brexit: the young should register to vote – and they should vote “Leave”

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

David Cameron, speaking in Japan where he is attending the G7 Summit, has said that the young, in Britain, should register to vote. He says it may be the most important vote of their lives and it is for them to decide what kind of country they want to live in. He’s exactly right.

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20160115 How DailyMotion.Com profits from criminal enterprise and may be helping terrorists.

Friday, 15 January, 2016 – 00:00

I woke this morning expecting to pack for a trip, do a few bits and pieces at work, put the data I need for travel onto a portable drive and clean the house so I don’t come back to a dump, all after enjoying the first cup of tar-like coffee that starts my day.

As usual, while the espresso machine was heating up, I turned looked at the overnight e-mails. There, right in plain view, was another example of why the internet needs a major clean up.
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