Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement (J5) to Fight Against International Tax Crime and Money Laundering Including Cryptocurrency

The Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement, or the “J5”, is a group of nations dedicated to fighting against tax crime and money laundering. Participants in the J5 include the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) and Australian Taxation Office (ATO), the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), the Fiscale Inlichtingen- en Opsporingsdienst (FIOD), HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI).

Leaders of tax enforcement authorities from Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States have established a “joint operational alliance”, the Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement (J5), to increase collaboration in the fight against international and transnational tax crime and money laundering.

The J5 recently held their first meeting where they developed tactical plans and identified opportunities to pursue cyber criminals and enablers of transnational tax crime. As part of this first meeting, the tax authorities discussed issues with cryptocurrencies.

Johanne Charbonneau, Director General, Canada Revenue Agency, stated;

“The formation of the J5 demonstrates the serious commitment of governments around the globe in enhancing international cooperation in fighting serious international tax and financial crimes, money laundering, and cybercrime through the use of cryptocurrencies. The J5 complements the important international work of the OECD through operational collaboration. Our collective efforts and experience will be shared to jointly identify and address the increasingly sophisticated and global schemes and the professional enablers that facilitate such schemes.”

Hans van der Vlist, General Director FIOD in the Netherlands added;

“The unique thing about the J5 is the operational collaboration between five countries on tackling professional enablers that facilitate offshore tax crime, cybercrime and the threat of cryptocurrencies to tax administrations, as well as making best use of internationally available data and technology.”

Tax evasion, money laundering and criminal activity in the borderless digital age has become a pressing issue. In the US, multiple regulatory and legislative groups have held hearings and meetings seeking better ways to address criminal activity and cybercrime that may be facilitated with digital currencies.

Col Blanch, Executive Director Intelligence Operations, Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, said that financial crime is global with proceeds easily transferred between jurisdictions.

“This is why we are committed to working with our domestic and international partners to proactively target offshore service providers and cybercriminals who specialise in targeting the financial sector.”

Updates on J5 initiatives are expected in late 2018.

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