5MLD is a European Union directive that was adopted in May 2018 and came into force in January 2020. It builds on previous EU directives, such as the Fourth Money Laundering Directive (4MLD), and aims to strengthen the legal framework for preventing money laundering and terrorist financing in the financial sector.
One of the key changes introduced by 5MLD is the expansion of the scope of anti-money laundering (AML) regulations to cover virtual currencies, prepaid cards, and anonymous safe-deposit boxes. Financial institutions that deal in these areas are now required to carry out risk assessments and implement appropriate AML controls, such as customer due diligence (CDD) and ongoing monitoring.
5MLD also introduces new reporting obligations for tax intermediaries, such as lawyers and accountants, who are required to report certain cross-border arrangements that could be used for tax evasion. In addition, 5MLD imposes sanctions for non-compliance with AML regulations, including fines and imprisonment.
Overall, 5MLD represents a significant step forward in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing in the EU. By expanding the scope of AML regulations and introducing new reporting obligations and sanctions, 5MLD aims to make it harder for criminals to exploit the financial system for their own gain, while promoting transparency and integrity in the financial sector. Financial institutions that operate in the EU must ensure that they comply with the requirements of 5MLD to avoid the risk of fines and reputational damage.
5MLD has since been superseded by the Sixth EU Money Laundering Directive (6MLD)