Estate agencies in Labour’s sights as it promises ‘kleptocracy crackdown’

Labour's David Lammy says it will raise the stakes to prevent money laundering, with agents likely to feel the pressure if the party wins the election.

david lammy aml

Labour is planning a crackdown on money laundering if it wins the General Election that will add to many estate agency’s existing AML costs and paperwork.

The party is promising to target ‘enablers’ of dirty money which could include agents, lawyers and accountants, saying the Tories have failed to address the problem, even though the current AML red-tape many face is already a major headache.


Shadow Foreign Secretary David Lammy (main image) was expected to outline Labour’s anti-money laundering measures in the coming days, which include a £250,000 reward to whistleblowers, the Financial Times reports.

“Our security partners see us not only failing, but too often enabling Russian kleptocrats to grow stronger,” Lammy is due to say.

Corruption and money laundering… have made a mockery of the rule of law.”

Corruption and money laundering continue to finance crime on British streets and have made a mockery of the rule of law, he added.

The Tories agree – last week, foreign office minister Andrew Mitchell said that 40% of the money laundered around the world comes through London, UK Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies.


HMRC recently revealed that 254 estate agency businesses had been fined a total of over £1.6 million for failing to register, or re-register with them for AML with fines ranging from £1,500 to over £50,000.

Estate agents are often warned to ensure their AML process is rigorous, or they could face huge fines. Previously, research showed that many agents do not take their responsibilities seriously enough, and fail to register with HMRC for AML compliance as required by law.

Image credit: Labour Party

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