Australia’s financial intelligence agency, the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre, (AUSTRAC), received 81, 074 “suspicious matter reports” in the last financial year. 536 were identified as linked or potentially linked to terrorism.
That’s a 300 percent increase in the number of financial transactions suspected of being linked to terrorism.
“2014 was the deadliest year for terrorism on record,” AUSTRAC Chief Executive Paul Jevtovic has said.
A key concern is Islamic State (IS). According to an ABC News report, AUSTRAC has compiled a financial profile of “those Australians who decided to go overseas to fight with IS, or other terror groups, or who supply financial support.”
The report identifies financial behaviours common to terrorist sympathisers who plan to travel to Syria or send money to terrorist groups.
“Whether it is a terrorist act or crimes by organised criminals there’s always a financial DNA if you like,” Jevtovic added.
The total value of terrorist financing cited in the suspicious transaction reports accumulated by AUSTRAC in the past financial year is approximately AUD$53 million.
According to Jevtovic, “We are not saying that $53 million was for terrorism financing, but in amongst the legitimate money that has been sent are examples and evidence of support for terrorism groups.”
190 Australians are suspected of providing financial or recruitment support to groups such as IS in Syria. Another 110 are suspected of travelling to Syria to fight for IS or other groups.
Source: ABC News