Release of the 6th edition of the Basel AML Index. Download report here
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Register now: Arbitration and Crime. Dealing with Allegations of Economic Crime in Arbitration, Basel 11 - 12 January 2018. For more information, click here
International experts discuss lessons learned from Windward Trading Case at Chatham House
In July, the Basel Institute in cooperation with Chatham House invited speakers from Jersey, Kenya, Nigeria and the UK to examine how lessons from the Windward Trading case might be applied in other sub-Saharan African countries and in international corruption cases.
According to the World Bank’s Stolen Asset Recovery programme nearly $1.4 billion in suspected corrupt assets were frozen in OECD countries between 2010 and 2012, but less than $150 million was returned. Recovering stolen assets is of particular importance for sub-Saharan African countries, given the extent of the looting of public funds carried out by corrupt leaders and officials. The recently confirmed confiscation and subsequently agreed upon return of stolen assets from Jersey to Kenya - in the context of the investigation of Windward Trading Limited - is therefore a significant achievement.
The panelists agreed that partnership, understanding each other’s systems and procedures, and informal communication between requesting and requested states is critical to successfully recover stolen public funds internationally. Read more
Chatham House event with Basel Institute on Governance, London 2017
International Centre for Asset Recovery (ICAR)
How can you improve your investigation and prosecutorial skills in handling corruption cases?
Order a print copy of ICAR's new training brochure on Financial Investigations and Asset Recovery by e-mail or access it online.
Local prosecutors, trained by ICAR, play key role in yet another money-laundering conviction in Uganda
In September, Ugandan prosecutors secured another conviction for money laundering perpetrated by a former Swedish Embassy accountant, only a few months after the country's first ground-breaking money laundering trial. The accused, who stole almost EUR 1.9 million, was charged by the prosecution with money laundering, embezzlement, forgery and uttering a false document.
The prosecutors involved in this case had all benefitted from ICAR's training workshops on Financial Investigations and Asset Recovery conducted in 2016 in the context of the DFID funded "Strengthening Uganda's Anti-Corruption and Accountability Regime (SUGAR)" programme. One of them had also previously been trained by ICAR as a certified trainer through its Train-the-Trainer (TTT) programme on Financial Investigations and Asset Recovery.
The prosecution team proved the importance of pursuing the proceeds of crime through the use of money laundering legislation, a hallmark of the ICAR training. The conviction is viewed as a huge victory by the prosecution as it is the first case prosecuted before the Anti-Corruption Court in which a custodial sentence has been passed down via a plea bargain.
The accused pleaded guilty to seven counts of money laundering under a plea agreement. He was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment and agreed to compensate the Swedish Embassy with several properties acquired using proceeds of crime.
Training workshop on Financial Investigations and Asset Recovery, Uganda 2016
Tanzania and Romania: focusing on inherent sustainability of ICAR's Train-the-Trainer programmes
Sustainable capacity building at a national level is one of the centrepieces of ICAR’s activities; Train-the-Trainer (TTT) programmes play an important role in the process. Between January and September 2017, ICAR experts delivered a series of practical training workshops on Financial Investigations and Asset Recovery in Tanzania to nearly 100 investigators and prosecutors, four of which were also trained to become certified trainers. These certified local trainers are now ready to conduct training workshops independently and are planning to do so early in 2018, thus ensuring the programme’s sustainability.
This TTT programme was funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) through the Swiss Embassy in Tanzania. It consisted of four workshops and targeted an audience from the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB), the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP), the Zanzibar Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Authority (ZAECA) and the Tanzanian Police Force.
A similar TTT programme on Financial Investigations and Asset Recovery is currently being rolled out in Romania for the Ministry of Justice's National Office for National Agency for the Management of Seized Assets (ANABI). Six potential trainers have been identified and are in the process of getting familiarised with ICAR’s training methodology, already delivering first presentations themselves under the guidance of ICAR experts. Through the use of a simulated practical exercise, the ICAR team mentored the selected trainers in the application of the Case Study Method to enhance investigative and prosecutorial capacity amongst their peers and to encourage learning. The final workshop is scheduled for the end of October 2017 and will be conducted in its entirety by the six selected trainers and monitored by the ICAR's Head of Training.
TTT workshop on Financial Investigations and Asset Recovery, Tanzania 2017
Interactive training programme helps to promote regional collaboration in Africa
With a view to fostering co-operation across regional and international boarders to successfully handle asset recovery cases, ICAR recently had the opportunity to conduct a regional training programmes in Botswana. The workshop, which took place in August and was co-financed by the African Development Bank (AfDB), the Commonwealth Africa Anti-Corruption Centre (CAACC) and the Basel Institute, was delivered to investigators and legal officers of anti-corruption agencies from eight African Commonwealth countries. ICAR is pleased to see that the training has now led to fruitful discussions with the AfDB and CAACC with a view to cementing a long-term tripartite relationship and future collaboration in regional training initiatives.
A second regional ICAR training programme is planned in collaboration with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA). This workshop will target investigators, prosecutors, magistrates and representatives of Financial Intelligence Units and Central Banks of a select group of COMESA countries. The main objective of this training will be to demonstrate and underscore the importance of international cooperation in successfully handling money laundering and corruption cases.
Regional training workshop, Botswana 2017
Public Governance (Research) Division
Experts finalise research study on understanding how endemic corruption works in East Africa
Researchers at the Basel Institute have finalised their study on “Corruption, Social Norms and Behaviours in East Africa”. Funded by DFID’s East Africa Research Fund and headed by Dr Claudia Baez Camargo from the Basel Institute, this research project was launched in January 2016.
Since then, the Basel research team has been working closely with a number of East African researchers to investigate the behavioural factors driving attitudes towards petty corruption among citizens in Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. Earlier this year in May, the researchers had already completed an important milestone of the project, by publishing a systematic literature review on the topic.
During the month of July, the researchers organised a series of consultation workshops in Dar es Salaam, Kampala, and Kigali to present the project findings and solicit feedback from major national stakeholders. The workshops were well received and attended by representatives from the case study countries' anti-corruption authorities as well as the local donor community, civil society and academics. Their feedback was used to finalise the project deliverables consisting of research reports and policy briefs for each of the three countries as well as a comparative analysis distilling major findings and policy implications of the study.
All reports will be published online on our website in the Fall 2017.
Consultation workshop, Rwanda 2017
New collaboration with the Institute for Development Studies (IDS)
The Basel Institute and the Institute for Development Studies (IDS) will work together to provide expert support to the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) in the framework of SDC's thematic network on democratisation, decentralisation and local government (DDLG). IDS is a leading global institution for development research, teaching and learning, and impact and communications, based at the University of Sussex.
Over the course of this four-year programme the Basel Institute’s research team together with IDS will support SDG's DDLG network with expertise and advice on relevant topics to enhance the network members' knowledge and enable them to increase their impact on programming.
The initiative is implemented by a consortium, led by IDS and the Basel Institute, together with XImpulse and Fondation Hirondell as core partners.
Rwanda: Learning how to use quantitative and qualitative research methodologies for corruption research
Researchers from the Basel Institute recently delivered a workshop on quantitative and qualitative research methodologies for corruption research at the Protestant University of Rwanda (PUR) in Butare, Rwanda.
An integral part of the programme involved a review of the foundations of quantitative and qualitative research methodologies with a focus on providing practical knowledge and tools for developing research programmes focussing on corruption. In addition to members of the Faculty of PUR, the workshop was also attended by staff from the Rwandan Office of the Ombudsman and members of the Rwanda Academy of Language and Culture.
Workshop, Rwanda 2017
Corporate Governance / Compliance Division
Rwanda: Training non-state actors on corruption prevention
In September 2017, the Basel Institute and the Rwandan Office of the Ombudsman concluded a joint two-year project to strengthen the involvement of non-state actors in the fight against corruption in Rwanda. Under the same project, funded by the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC), Basel Institute experts earlier this year had also delivered training to bankers from Rwanda on international standards against money laundering and corruption for financial institutions and a training for journalists to equip them with practical skills in using open-source tools and databases for corruption investigations.
The final and concluding workshop in Kigali in September 2017 was dedicated to working with the private sector associations under the Private Sector Federation of Rwanda. The workshop brought together representatives from all of the country's thirty districts and from a wide range of industries, including banana wine makers, brewery, pottery and telecommunications. Participants represented domestic companies that varied greatly in size, with some selling their products and services to government authorities in Rwanda and others more directly to private customers.
The participants actively engaged in the workshop, openly sharing their own experiences with being solicited for bribes, seeking to know how to resist such requests and how other countries coped with such challenges. While the fruitful exchange between the Basel Institute's experts and the local participants created a fresh sense of awareness of the challenges in this regard, the Office of the Ombudsman recognised that a lot remains to be done to ensure more widespread awareness of specific corruption challenges in the country and how to deal with them.
Training workshop, Rwanda 2017
International Centre for Collective Action (ICCA)
Does e-government have an impact in reducing corruption?
E-government generally refers to the use of information and communication technologies to transform relations between citizens, businesses and various branches of government, and includes for example; e-procurement, e-customs, e-tax filing and e-sourcing.
By reducing personal contacts between companies and government officials the scope for arbitrary decision-making, bureaucratic delays and the attendant opportunities for bribery are theoretically diminished. In a report on New perspectives in e-government and the prevention of corruption to be published soon, the Basel Institute explores this issue from a private sector perspective and for private sector actors who are interested in a more comprehensive understanding of the scope and examples of e-government solutions to improve their anti-corruption policies. It concludes with numerous recommendations not only for the private sector but also for governments.
This report presents the results of an anonymous web survey conducted by the Basel Institute in early 2017 and supported by GSK and Deloitte. It ascertains the extent to which companies are aware of, and use, e-government tools and digital solutions and to solicit their views and experiences regarding the effects of such tools on bribery.
Join us for the presentation of the findings from the survey:
For more information about this forthcoming event, or if you wish to pre-order a hardcopy of the report, please send us an email.
ICCA experts to teach at the International Anti-Corruption Academy
The International Centre for Collective Action (ICCA) extends its activities into teaching on an institutional level. As of January 2018, ICCA experts will provide teaching modules on initiating and managing Collective Action for professionals at the International Anti-Corruption Academy (IACA) in Laxenburg, Austria.
Our ICCA experts have agreed to teach within the framework of the newly created International Master in Anti-Corruption Compliance and Collective Action (IMACC), which is the first master’s programme specially designed for anti-corruption compliance and collective action professionals involved with the business sector.
International Anti-Corruption Academy (IACA) Laxenburg, Austria
Play a game, learn to fight black money and save African wildlife
A team around US money laundering Expert Tom Creal has developed an App Game - Eva Black Money Games - through which the impact of money laundering and “black money” on a series of serious crimes, including wildlife related crimes and terrorism, are highlighted. Proceeds of the game will be going to international conservation organisations. ICAR is supporting this effort of using modern tools to foster education and awareness about financial crimes and their broader impact.