Terrorist organisations require funds to plan and carry out attacks, train militants, pay their operatives and promote their ideologies. The Terrorism Act 2000 (TA 2000) criminalises not only the participation in terrorist activities but also the provision of monetary support for terrorist purposes.
The principal terrorist financing offences in Sections 15 to 18 (TA 2000) apply to all persons. However, the specific offence of failure to disclose and the two tipping off offences apply only to persons in the regulated sector.
It is an offence for a person to be involved in fundraising if they have knowledge or reasonable cause to suspect that the money or other property raised may be used for terrorist purposes. Such person can commit the offence by:
It is no defence that the money or other property is a payment for goods and services.
It is an offence for a person to use or possess money or other property for terrorist purposes, including when that person has reasonable cause to suspect they may be used for these purposes.
It is an offence for a person to become involved in an arrangement which makes money or other property available to another if they know, or have reasonable cause to suspect it may be used for terrorist purposes.
It is an offence to enter into or become concerned in an arrangement facilitating the retention or control of terrorist property by, or on behalf of, another person including, but not limited to the following ways:
Terrorist property means money or other property which is likely to be used for the purposes of terrorism, the proceeds of the commission of acts of terrorism and the proceeds of acts carried out for the purposes of terrorism.
It is a defence if the person did not know, and had no reasonable cause to suspect, that the arrangement related to terrorist property.
The following defences are available:
There are further defences relating to co-operation with the police in Section 21. A person does not commit an offence under Sections 15 to 18 in the following further circumstances:
The defence of disclosure to a constable or SOCA is also available to an employee who makes a disclosure about terrorist financing offences in accordance with the internal reporting procedures laid down by their employer.
Section 19 TA 2000 provides that anyone, whether they are aor not, must disclose as soon as reasonably practicable to a constable, or SOCA, if they know or suspect that another person has committed a terrorist financing offence based on information which came to them in the course of a trade, profession or employment. The test is subjective.
Section 21A TA 2000 creates a criminal offence for those in the regulated sector who fail to make a disclosure to either a constable or their nominated officer where there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that another person has committed an offence. This also covers failure to disclose an attempted offence under Sections 15 to 18 TA 2000.
A person has a defence to failure to disclose offences under both section 19 and section 21A if either:
There is an additional defence for those in the regulated sector. A person has a defence where they are employed or are in partnership with a professional legal adviser or other relevant professional adviser to provide assistance and support and they receive information concerning terrorist property in privileged circumstances.
It is also a defence under section 19 if a person makes an internal report in accordance with their employer's reporting procedures.
It is not an offence if an employee, officer or partner of a firm discloses that a SAR has been made if it is to an employee, officer or partner of the same undertaking.
An independent legal professional or a relevant professional adviser does not commit an offence if the disclosure is made to another independent legal professional or a relevant professional adviser where both the person making the disclosure and the person to whom it is made are in either an EEA state or a state imposing equivalent anti-money laundering requirements and those persons perform their professional activities within different undertakings that share common ownership, management or control.
An independent legal professional or a relevant professional adviser does not commit an offence if he makes a disclosure to another person of the same kind from a different undertaking but of the same professional standing as himself (including as to duties of professional confidentiality and the protection of personal data) where the disclosure relates to the same client or former client of both advisers and involves a transaction or provisions of a service that involved them both, the disclosure is only made for the purpose of preventing a terrorist financing offence and the disclosure is made to a person in an EU Member State or a State imposing an equivalent money laundering requirements. This means that e.g., an accountant may only disclose to another accountant, and not to a lawyer or another kind of relevant professional adviser.
A professional legal adviser or other relevant professional adviser will not commit a tipping off offence if the disclosure is to a client and it is made for the purpose of dissuading the client from engaging in conduct amounting to an offence.
The Al Qaida and Taliban (United Nations Measures) Order 2006 and the Terrorism (United Nations Measures) Order 2006 create offences of providing funds or economic resources to terrorists.