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Purplebricks slapped with £266,793 fine for AML breaches

By Elizabeth Hearst

UK real-estate company Purplebricks has been fined £266,793 for anti-money laundering breaches by UK Revenue & Customs (HMRC). 

HM Revenue & Customs requires estate agents to implement checks on all customers to ensure no money laundering had taken place, and are legally obligated to report suspicious activity, as reported by Bloomberg

HMRC published a list of businesses that had not complied with 2017 money laundering regulations for the tax year 2019 to 2020, and fined Purplebricks for “failures in having the correct policies, controls and procedures, conducting due diligence and timing of verification”. 

A statement from HMRC said: “Money laundering funds serious and organized crime and costs the UK economy billions of pounds every year… We’re here to support businesses in protecting themselves from criminals who would prey on their services. That also means taking action against the minority who fail to meet their legal obligations under the regulations and in doing so invite abuse”. 

Similarly, Countrywide Estate Agents were fined £215,000 for failing to “ensure policies, controls and procedures at group level”, as well as “failures in conducting due diligence, timing of verification and proper record keeping”. 

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