SUSPICIOUS OR UNUSUAL TRANSACTIONS REPORT (STR & SAR)

Where a person in a business, which includes the owner, manager and/or employee of a business, suspects that a client is using funds that could possibly have been derived from unlawful activities, this must be reported to the FIC.

Because the FIC relies on the information and data in STRs filed by business to conduct its work, the reports must be filed no later than 15 days of becoming aware of the suspicious transaction or activity. The FIC uses these reports to conduct analysis and develop financial intelligence reports proactively and reactively. The FIC disseminates financial intelligence reports to law enforcement and prosecutorial authorities for their investigative work and their applications for asset forfeiture.

To submit an STR, a business simply needs to register on the FIC website.

STRs must be made online using the FIC’s web reporting platform “goAML”.

Registration is a free, once-off process. No reports can be submitted without registration

Once an STR is filed with the FIC, the reporter may continue with the transaction, unless the FIC issues an intervention order directing the reporter not to do so. The purpose of the intervention order is to prevent the dissipation of funds or property which may be the proceeds of unlawful activity.

A reporter is also prohibited from informing anyone of the contents of an STR. This is to maintain the strictest confidentiality of the STR and the reporter.

FICA offers protection to individuals and entities who participate in making STRs and comply in good faith with FICA’s reporting obligations by prohibiting legal action, either criminal or civil, from being instituted against them.

Any person who fails to report a suspicious transaction is guilty of an offence in terms of FICA and is liable to imprisonment for a maximum period of up to 15 years or a fine of up to R100 million. STRs must be made online using the FIC’s web reporting platform “goAML”.

This video shows you in detail how to submit a Submitting a Suspicious or Unusual Transaction Report (STR) and a Suspicious Activity Report (SAR)