The European Union’s top court, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ordered Ireland on the 16th of July to pay a lump sum of €2 million to the European Commission for failing to implement in full regulations aimed to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing within the period prescribed.
Romania was also hit with a fine of €3 million in the judgment.
The judgement relates to implementation of directive 2015/849 or the 4th EU AML Directive. Member states are provided with an appropriate lead in time to implement EU regulations. In this case, the Directive required member states to comply with the relevant administrative provisions by 26 June 2017. Ireland implemented most of these provisions more than a year later, in November 2018.
So, on 27 August 2018, the Commission had brought actions against Ireland and Romania before the ECJ for failure to fulfil their obligations. Ireland and Romania had argued that the fines sought by the European Commission were unjustified and disproportionate.
But the court ruled that even though the countries had since complied with the rules, there was an undue delay in fulfilling their obligations.
With Ireland already late in transposing directive 2018/853 or the 5th EU AML on the 10th of January of this year, Ireland could expect to pay another hefty fine in due course. The Commission has already issued Ireland with a formal notice.
To view the ECJ Press release Click HERE
By Judy de Castro - RegSol Consultant