INTERPOL returns to Vienna for centenary police conference

The 2023 General Assembly is the largest ever, bringing together law enforcement leaders from the Organization’s 196 member countries.

VIENNA, Austria – The annual INTERPOL General Assembly began its 91st session in Vienna today, a century after the organization was founded in the Austrian capital.
Opened by Karl Nehammer, Federal Chancellor of the Republic of Austria, this year’s conference gathers more than 1,000 police and law enforcement leaders from over 160 countries to discuss strengthening international police cooperation amidst an unprecedented rise in transnational crime.
Chancellor Nehammer said in his remarks to delegates:
"As Chancellor, it is an honor for me to welcome INTERPOL to its 100th anniversary here in Vienna, its founding city. International cooperation in the fight against crime is more important than ever in times like these, as crime knows no borders, whether within Europe or across continents."
The 91st General Assembly session comes at a critical point in the fight against transnational organized crime – what INTERPOL’s President and Secretary General are calling a “tipping point”.
During the four-day session (28 November – 1 December), delegates will analyze this expanding threat landscape breaks within different world regions and crime areas, with an emphasis on leveraging technology and new cooperation mechanisms.
INTERPOL President Ahmed Naser al-Raisi, who chairs the General Assembly, said in his opening remarks to delegates:
“No country or region should be left behind in the fight against crime. It is our duty to empower you as we face a constantly changing criminal landscape. Every country has a role to play and every contribution matters.”
The General Assembly is INTERPOL’s supreme governing body and sets the organization’s programme of activities and financial policy for the coming year. Specific reports will be presented on disrupting environmental crime, preventing the circulation of child sexual abuse and intercepting the proceeds of financial crime.

Bridging past and future
The International Criminal Police Commission (ICPC) was founded at a police congress convened in 1923 by Johannes Schober, then President of the Vienna Police.
INTERPOL’s Secretary General Jürgen Stock said: “INTERPOL is a revolutionary idea that was developed in an era of intense geopolitical tension. Today, our world is still fragmented in many ways. But this common conviction, that only together can we effectively face emerging crime threats, unites us. And it is more relevant today than at any point in our 100-year history.”
The first day of the General Assembly focused on bridging INTERPOL’s past and future, with five former INTERPOL Presidents sharing the stage to discuss lessons learned on collaboration and innovation.
A session on INTERPOL’s Vision 2030 initiative, launched last year to help steer the organization’s strategic direction over the coming decade, followed with the establishment of a dedicated group of experts to help implement the initiative’s recommendations.

The Special Investigation Commission (SIC) is a multi-function financial intelligence unit (FIU) with judicial status. It is the center piece of Lebanon’s AML/CFT regime, a platform for international cooperation and plays a vital role in safeguarding concerned sectors from illicit proceeds.
The SIC’s tasks include receiving and analyzing suspicious transaction reports (STRs), conducting financial investigations, lifting banking secrecy, freezing accounts and/or transactions and forwarding them to concerned judicial authorities. 
With respect to terrorism and the financing of terrorism, the SIC is also empowered to prevent the use of movable or immovable assets. In addition to sharing ML/TF intelligence with counterparts and coordinating with foreign/local competent authorities on requests of assistance (ROAs), the SIC also proposes AML/CFT regulations and issues regulations and recommendations to concerned parties. 
AML/CFT supervision via risk based compliance examinations that cover banks and other reporting entities to ensure proper implementation of prevailing regulations is also among its tasks.

Law No. 44 criminalizes illicit proceeds that are derived from the following offences:

1. The growing, manufacturing, or illicit trafficking of narcotic drugs and/or psychotropic substances according to the Lebanese laws. 
2. The participation in illegal associations with the intention of committing crimes and misdemeanors. 
3. Terrorism, according to the provisions of Lebanese laws. 
4. The financing of terrorism or terrorist acts and any other related activities (travel, organizing, training, recruiting…) or the financing of individuals or terrorist organizations, according to the provisions of Lebanese laws. 
5. Illicit arms trafficking. 
6. Kidnapping, using weapons or any other means. 
7. Insider trading, breach of confidentiality, hindering of auctions, and illegal speculation. 
8. Incitation to debauchery and offence against ethics and public decency by way of organized gangs. 
9. Corruption, including bribery, trading in influence, embezzlement, abuse of functions, abuse of power, and illicit enrichment. 
10. Theft, breach of trust, and embezzlement. 
11. Fraud, including fraudulent bankruptcy. 
12. The counterfeiting of public and private documents and instruments, including checks and credit cards of all types and the counterfeiting of money, stamps and stamped papers. 
13. Smuggling, according to the provisions of the Customs Law. 
14. The counterfeiting of goods and fraudulent trading in counterfeit goods. 
15. Air and maritime piracy. 
16. Trafficking in human beings and smuggling of migrants. 
17. Sexual exploitation, including sexual exploitation of children. 
18. Environmental crimes. 
19. Extortion. 
20. Murder. 
21. Tax evasion, in accordance with the Lebanese laws

Money-laundering operations may occur in any business especially:  
· Banks  
· Other financial institutions (insurance, mutual funds, etc.)  
· Money exchange firms  
· Antique dealers  
· Real estate concerns  
· Jewelry dealers