According to the Dubai Financial Services Authority, the firm was involved in 'systematic' illegal cash services for a two-year period .
The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) has announced that it has fined La Tresorerie Limited about $612,790 following “multiple, serious breaches” of regulations, mainly stemming from illegal services that provided cash to clients, it was announced on Thursday.
In a statement, the DFSA said that the illegal cash service was “in systematic operation” for almost two years between February 2015 and January 2017, with the full knowledge of La Tresorerie’s senior management at that time.
The current senior management of La Tresorerie were not involved in the Illegal Cash Service and reported it to the DFSA upon discovering it.
The illegal cash service included the use of false invoices to unregulated companies outside of DIFC, as well as the transportation of large amounts of cash from the UAE to a foreign country. These moves led to La Tresorerie “misleading its custodian and a bank about the nature and purpose of certain transactions.”
The DFSA investigation found more than 100 transactions carried out as part of the illegal cash service, ranging from AED 10,000 to AED 2,000. The total amount of physical cash provided by the firm was found to total more than $7.3 million.
While the DFSA was able to reach a settlement with La Tresorerie with respecting to the findings of its investigation, it was reached after the period that DFSA had set for a settlement discount to be available. If settlement had been achieved during that period, La Tresorerie would have been able to obtain a 30 percent discount on the fine imposed.
“The illegal cash service provided by La Tresorerie was a serious breach of DFSA rules, further compounded by the senior management’s attempts to disguise this business activity,” Bryan Stirewalt, chief executive of the DFSA said.
“This activity demonstrated a clear lack of integrity, and opened the firm up to a high risk of money laundering, as well as placing client money at undue risk,” he added. “We will take strong action against any firm or individual who demonstrates such a risk to the DIFC.”