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EU Introduces Border Cash Controls

A new European Union (EU) law obliging travellers to declare cash comes into force soon. It is being introduced to help combat money laundering, says the UK's HMRC.

As from 15 June 2007, people who are either entering the EU from a non-EU country, or are travelling from an EU to a non-EU country and are carrying 10,000 Euros or more (or the equivalent in other currencies) will be required to declare the cash to at the place of their departure from, or arrival in, the EU. In the case of the UK, the rules will be enforced by HMRC.

Forms on which to make the declaration will be available at ports or airports and will also be downloadable from the HMRC internet site. Travellers could face a penalty of up to GBP5,000 if they fail to comply with the obligation to declare, or provide incorrect or incomplete information.

Dave Humphries, Head of Criminal and Enforcement Policy (HMRC) said: "The declaration system is one means of providing information to assist HMRC in targeting movements of criminal cash more effectively."

The EU cash declaration scheme derives from European Parliament and Council Regulation No. 1889/2005 and comes into effect in all EU Member States on 15 June 2007. "Cash" not only means currency notes and coins but also bankers'
drafts and cheques of any kind (including travellers' cheques).

The declaration form will be produced with a carbon backed top copy so as to allow travellers to have a duplicate, which officers of HMRC may ask them to produce as evidence of having made a declaration.

HMRC officers will not detain properly declared cash if they have no reason to doubt its legitimacy. However, cash may be seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 if an officer has reasonable grounds to suspect that it is either the proceeds of, or is intended for use in, unlawful conduct.

Source Tax-news.com

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