Some interesting revelations under the Draft Register of Overseas Entities Bill laid in Parliament today.
For the first time, overseas entities owning UK properties will be required to reveal their ultimate beneficial owner as well as other information on a publicly accessible register. The new information inserted on the register will make it easier for authorities to identify criminals and seize criminal proceeds.
Penalties include the following:
- 5 years in jail for individuals who are found to be selling or leasing property without first declaring its beneficial owner
- 2 years imprisonment and an unlimited fine for individuals who do not register overseas entities when instructed to do so
- 2 years imprisonment and an unlimited fine for individuals who knowingly insert false information on the register
For too long criminals have been able to use the property industry as a front for investing dodgy funds, hiding dirty money and evading the law. This stops now. Lord Duncan, UK government minister for Scotland