FACT Serves as the Voice of Due Diligence at 2019 Caribbean Investment Summit ~ WIC News
The 2019 Caribbean Investment Summit held in St Kitts and Nevis provided a platform for a robust discussion on due diligence, and its significance as a cornerstone of citizenship by investment. Leading the discussion was Tarique Ghaffur, a consultant for UK-based, seasoned investigative firm FACT.
With over 35 years of crime detection and prevention, FACT holds a prominent position in the United Kingdom, and is the partner of choice for governments, law enforcement agencies, and private sector actors alike, including large corporations such as Sky and Virgin Media. FACT’s management team can boast high-profile careers with national entities such as London’s Metropolitan Police and the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation, and international bodies such as Europol, Interpol, and the United Nations.
Within the context of due diligence and verification, FACT therefore offers wide and diverse expertise, derived from years of working with law enforcement from all over the world, accessing a variety of domestic and transnational databases, and performing complex on-the-ground investigations. “Personal background checks are a large part of our work,” says FACT CEO Kieron Sharp. “Invariably, this means evaluating a person’s identity, family, professional and occupational history, education, reputation, financial status, political exposure, and – of course – criminal activity.” Police investigations and legal proceedings against an individual are also examined, as are sanctions and other watch lists.
Mr Sharp says that FACT’s mandate is even wider with respect to citizenship by investment applicants. “We don’t just look at the person, we look at his or her business and source of funds, and we verify all the documents the person submits with the application. It is vital that there be clarity and certainty as to the applicant. Ultimately, the Caribbean citizenship by investment jurisdictions require a level of thoroughness that is almost unmatched, and we make sure we deliver each and every time.”
It is no secret that the Caribbean has prioritised due diligence in its citizenship by investment programmes, particularly by partnering with high-calibre firms such as FACT. Speaking at the Summit, Prime Minister Timothy Harris underlined the region’s determination to “always maintain the strongest and most robust due diligence programme in the world” and to “never condone wrong or become a haven to illicit actors.” Similarly, only a few days prior at the Fourth Sitting of the OECS Assembly in Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica’s Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit, said that respect for the due diligence process was “heavily entrenched” in the Caribbean citizenship by investment programmes.