Lack of Clarity in Recent Criminal Law Directive Gives Ground for Significant Expansion of EU Money Laundering Regulation

Publikation: Working paperForskningpeer review


During the last decade, anti-money laundering regulation has escalated within the EU. The goal of this paper is to analyse the extent of the introduced criminal liability for legal persons related to money laundering offences by the sixth EU anti-money laundering directive. The focus of this paper is to conduct a pure legal analysis of Article 7 in the directive, which concern the requirements for establishing criminal liability for legal persons and discuss the content and possible compliance related problems. This article will first briefly analyse the attribution model chosen by the EU in regards of the interpretation of criminal law. On this basis, the focus will be on the concrete provision and the legal sources available for conducting the analysis. There has been found no prior research of this specific provision, which is surprising giving the significant possible impact. The article finds that while Paragraph 1 of Article 7 is clear and in line with the chosen attribution model (alter ego/identification model), Paragraph 2 is unclear. The ambiguity connected to Paragraph 2 is found to have significant impact on both harmonisation and compliance level of legal persons across the EU. The article discuss shortly reasons for this ambiguity and possible enhancements with the inclusion of the risk based approach, however these aspects are subject for further research. This article provides new information and shine a light on a problem in present EU regulation regarding criminal liability for legal persons concerning money-laundering offences.
Antal sider15
StatusUdgivet - 2021
NavnCBS LAW Research Paper


  • Money Laundering
  • EU regulation
  • Financial Crime
  • 6AMLD
  • Criminal Liability
  • AML