Jamaica News: Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Paula Llewellyn, is encouraging the heads of public and private financial entities to put in mechanisms and systems that will safeguard their operations against the occurrence of white-collar crimes, such as fraud.
Additionally, she urges them to seek external assistance, if it has been determined that these safeguards have been breached, by reporting such matters to the police.
The DPP was delivering the keynote address at the Jamaica Bankers Association (JBA) anti-fraud seminar, which was held at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel, St. Andrew, on Tuesday (July 24) under the theme ‘Fighting Fraud – Protecting Our Economy’.
Ms. Llewellyn noted that white-collar crimes, which also include bribery, forgery, money laundering and lottery scamming, can potentially destroy business entities as well as devastate personal financial resources and cause Jamaica to suffer global reputational damage.
She said while these illicit activities were once committed by persons deemed of high respectability and social standing, they are now being carried out by a wider cross-section of individuals, irrespective of gender, class, colour or educational background.
This, she argued, is partly attributable to the onset of technology, which “has erased all class, gender profiles or professional distinctions”.
Ms. Llewellyn said police statistics show that 1,758 cases of financial fraud were reported between 2009 and 2015, involving over US$5 million.
She emphasised that given the resulting damaging impact from fraud, safeguards should ideally be tailored towards ensuring that systems are instituted and persons of integrity strategically placed at points where breaches could occur, in order to prevent these.
“You (also) have to have a high level of discernment in terms of your internal investigators to be able to pick up immediately (whether) this is a matter that needs outside support, and make the decision and the linkages (to this end),” Ms. Llewellyn added.
The seminar, which was attended by bankers, law-enforcement officers, technology experts, representatives of government agencies, and prosecutors, was jointly organised by the JBA and Jamaica Institute of Financial Services.
Source: JIS News