Expert Major General Khalil Ibrahim Al Mansouri, Assistant Commander-in-Chief for Criminal Investigation Affairs at Dubai Police (R), and Ali Faisal Ba'Alawi, Head of the UAE Financial Intelligence Unit, signing the MoU at Expo 2020 Dubai on Wednesday Image Credit: Dubai Media Office

Dubai: The Dubai Police General Command and the UAE Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to enhance joint efforts to combat money laundering crimes and efficiently track illegal assets and criminal proceeds, in addition to establishing a Joint Operations Room to combat money laundering crimes.

Signing ceremony

Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh, Minister of State, and Lieutenant General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri, Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police, witnessed the signing ceremony, which was held at the Partners Hub at Expo 2020 Dubai.

The MoU was signed by Expert Major General Khalil Ibrahim Al Mansouri, Assistant Commander-in-Chief for Criminal Investigation Affairs at Dubai Police, and Ali Faisal Ba’Alawi, Head of the UAE Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), in the presence of Hamid Al Zaabi, Director General of the Executive Office of Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing (AML/CTF); Brigadier Jamal Salem Al Jallaf, Director of the General Department of Criminal Investigation at Dubai Police; and other senior officers and officials of both entities.

‘Qualitative leap’

Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh said the UAE continues to exert great efforts to combat money laundering, as part of which all concerned government agencies have joined forces to consolidate their capabilities to combat financial crimes around the clock.

“The MoU between the Dubai Police and FIU is a qualitative leap towards enhancing capabilities to combat this type of crime. By closely working together; we can be more effective in protecting and securing the financial system in the country,” Al Sayegh added.

Lt Gen Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri said the MoU is in line with the vision of the leadership and the state’s strategic objectives to activate cooperation mechanisms and find adequate tools and capabilities that can enhance the exchange of information regarding suspicious cases related to money laundering. Lt Gen Al Marri further stressed Dubai Police’s keenness to cement their cooperation and coordination with the FIU to ensure the safety and security of society.

Maj Gen Khalil Ibrahim Al Mansouri said under the MoU a joint operations room will be established at the Dubai Police General Headquarters to combat money laundering crimes.

Information exchange

“The MoU also outlines an effective mechanism for communications between the two parties to facilitate the exchange of information related to money laundering cases, improve the professional skills of employees of both parties, and strengthen cooperation in the field of personnel training and technical assistance,” Maj Gen Al Mansouri added.

Hamid Al Zaabi said the MoU between Dubai Police and FIU will effectively enhance cooperation and create a strong partnership across areas of shared responsibilities. “The MoU facilitates the flow of information and exchange of expertise, and boosts international cooperation in security and policing in a manner that serves common goals and contributes to achieving the state’s strategy to ensure the highest levels of security and safety,” he added.

Targeting organised crime

“The MoU is also part of the UAE’s continuous efforts to fight corruption, organised crime, terrorist financing and illicit financial flows at the regional and international levels.

“We, at AML/CTF, aim to prevent threats posed by illegal financial activities on the stability and integrity of the global financial system, and we look forward to further enhancing cooperation with our partners.”

Al Zaabi reaffirmed the UAE’s support for the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Financial Action Task Force for the Middle East and North Africa (MENAFATF). He added that the UAE continues to develop and advance its national system to combat money laundering and terrorist financing and implement the highest and latest international standards in this regard.

Faisal Ba’Alawi said the MoU will be positively and effectively utilised in financial crime investigations. It will also aid the FIU in analysing and tracking suspicious transactions and activities that may involve money laundering, terrorist financing, and other criminal activities.

He added that the joint operations room relies on data and reports received from financial institutions and designated non-financial businesses and professions, which enable concerned entities to effectively cooperate and share intelligence to identify illegal activities and take necessary legal measures.