Bank Negara Malaysia has been more aggressive in handling and monitoring money services business (MSB) operators. In their recent raid on Aug 1, collaborated with the Royal Malaysia Police and the Immigration Department, Bank Negara managed to freeze 35 bank accounts and seize RM 4mil cash and properties from a network of illegal MSB operators around Klang Valley and Penang. They also confiscated several documents, computers and mobile phones related to the black-market operations.
BNM has mentioned in a statement that 14 individuals were questioned to assist in the investigation and 22 illegal immigrants suspected to be workers and customers were detained by the Immigration Department under the Immigration Act 1959/63. The illegal MSB operators were suspected to have expedited illegal remittance activities, mainly for foreign customers and business traders.
The raids were conducted on eight premises owned by Magmatrons (M) Sdn Bhd, Vonstar Resources Sdn Bhd, and Vonstar Sdn Bhd located at :
- Jalan Silang in Kuala Lumpur
- Puchong, Selayang, Balakong & Klang
- Georgetown and Bukit Martajam in Pulau Pinang
“The network is investigated for suspected offences of carrying out MSB activities without a license under Section 4 (1) of the Money Services Business Act 2011 (MSBA) and engaging in money laundering activities, which is an offence under Section 4 (1) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (AMLA).”
“Those committing offences under section 4 (1) of the MSBA shall be liable to a fine not exceeding RM5mil or imprisonment not exceeding 10 years, or both.” Said BNM.
According to BNM, those committing offences under Section 4 (1) of the MSBA will be liable to a fine not exceeding RM5 million or imprisonment not exceeding 10 years or both.
For an offence under Section 4 (1) of AMLA, persons convicted shall be liable to imprisonment not exceeding 15 years and a fine of not less than five times the sum or value of the proceeds of an unlawful activity or instrumentalities at the time the offence was committed or RM5 million, whichever is higher.
BNM has advised the members of the public not to deal with illegal money service businesses, and anyone involved would not be protected from financial loss in the event of dispute. Some of the risks are stated as below :-
Risk Of Dealing With Illegal Operators :
Members of the public are advised to be careful and not fall prey before engaging any remittance service. Be alert and look out for the following common features:
- The approach by the operators may have been made by referrals or in person, but the intention is always the same, that is, to make money from your goods and services payments which includes offering of custom clearance and logistics.
- The operator also offers attractive foreign exchange rates and low service fees in comparison with the banks.
- Consumer protection under the laws administered by BNM is not applicable should the members of the public choose to deal with the illegal financial service providers.
- Members of the public who participate in the illegal financial activities could also be charged under the law as abetting the operators of such illegal activities.
A list of licensed MSB can be found on Bank Negara Malaysia website, (http://www.bnm.gov.my/microsite/fs/msb/agents/1b_total_licensees_by_type_of_business_remittance.pdf)
EasyPay Transfers is fully regulated and licensed by Bank Negara Malaysia to assist businesses remit money online securely. Our platform employs various security measures, which has been fully audited by Bank Negara Malaysia to guarantee smooth and secure transactions.