Monday, August 12, 2013

Tougher penalties for those financing terrorism - Channel News Asia

SINGAPORE: Parliament has passed an amendment to the Terrorism (Suppression of Financing) Bill.

Second Minister for Home Affairs, S Iswaran said that given Singapore's status as a major financial centre in Asia-Pacific, it is important to protect the integrity of the banking system, and prevent it from abuse by those seeking to fund terrorist activity.

Among the changes, the Bill enhances the penalties for terrorism financing offences. The maximum fine is raised from S$100,000 to S$500,000 for individuals, and to S$1 million for entities.

The Bill also introduces a new section which will make it an offence to disclose information likely to prejudice an investigation of a terrorism financing offence under the Act.

Mr Iswaran said: "To prevent a terrorist attack on Singapore, we have adopted a holistic strategy that not only seeks to harden Singapore against attacks through robust security measures, but also emphasises upstream preventive measures... The proposed amendments will boost our fight against terrorism by strengthening our counter terrorism financing regime and supporting our terrorist rehabilitation efforts.

"Terrorism is an international threat supported by a global network of terrorism financing operations. This requires close international coordination, supported by international bodies such as the FATF.

"The proposed legislative amendments are in line with international practices and FATF standards, and will enhance the government's effectiveness in countering terrorism financing."
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