The ICAEW Report relates to the events which unfolded during a High Court case. The details of this are to be found in our publication THE ACCOUNTANTS' LAUNDROMAT. Briefly, the case centred around the involvment of a small firm of accountants in money laundering. It involved accountants and non-accountants (e.g. Griffin, Humphrey) from England, the Isle of Man, Jersey, Tunisia, France and other places. It involved the use of companies registered in England and France. The money passed through banks in England.
In his judgement in AGIP (Africa) Limited v Jackson & Others (1990) 1 Ch. 265, Mr. Justice Millett said that
"Mr. Jackson and Mr. Griffin knew .... of no connection or dealings between the Plaintiffs and Kinz or of any commercial reason for the Plaintiffs to make substantial payments to Kinz. They must have realised that the only function which the payee companies or Euro-Arabian performed was to act as "cut-outs" in order to conceal the true destination of the money from the Plaintiffs .... to make it impossible for investigators to make any connection between the Plaintiffs and Kinz without having recourse to Lloyds Bank's records; and their object in frequently replacing the payee company by another must have been to reduce the risk of discovery by the Plaintiffs”.
“Mr. Jackson and Mr. Griffin are professional men. They obviously knew they were laundering money. .... It must have been obvious to them that their clients could not afford their activities to see the light of the day. Secrecy is the badge of fraud. They must have realised at least that their clients might be involved in a fraud on the plaintiffs”.
He also said that
“Jackson & Co. were introduced to the High Holborn branch of Lloyds Bank Plc. in March 1983 by a Mr Humphrey, a partner in the well known firm of Thornton Baker [now part of Grant Thornton]. They probably took over an established arrangement. Thenceforth they provided the payee companies... In each case Mr Jackson and Mr Griffin were the directors and the authorised signatories on the company's account at Lloyds Bank. In the case of the first few companies Mr Humphrey was also a director and authorised signatory”.
Successive governments fobbed off any questions about
the affair by arguing that the ICAEW had conducted an investigation. Of
course, this report was not published. It was not shown to Jackson and