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MAJURO, Marshall Islands (November 15, 2001 – The Marshall Islands Journal)---Banking Commissioner Alfred Alfred, Jr. met with Bank of Marshall Islands management and supervisory staff late last week to brief them on new reporting requirements to prevent financial crimes in the Marshall Islands.

He explained the commission’s "suspicious activity report," known as "SAR," to the assembled staff, which included bank President Patrick Chen and Majuro branch manager Heran Bellu.

He described the bank staff as being on the front lines of defense against illegal activity and said the SAR was one means of identifying suspicious financial transactions.

Currently, Bank of Hawaii and Bank of Guam, both FDIC insured banks, report directly to the FDIC, which has a 30-day response period for suspicious transactions. In contrast, the RMI Banking Commission’s response time is just three days, he indicated.

Given the speed with which money can be transferred through multiple banks worldwide, time is a critical factor in financial crime prevention, Alfred indicated.

The Marshall Islands Journal, Box 14, Majuro, Marshall Islands 96960 E-mail:  Subscriptions (weekly): 1 year US $87.00; international $213.00 (air mail).

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