University of Cambridge
Thomas-James, Dominic William Rupert.
Suspect Wealth – A Risk to Stability, Development and Sustainability: The case of Bermuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Anguilla.
Degree: PhD, 2019, University of Cambridge
In the global financial architecture, British Overseas Territories in the Caribbean and
North Atlantic are of material significance. Post-colonialism, these relatively homogeneous,
archipelagic territories with financial centres have been the recipients of soft-domination by
metropolitan interests. Through their inalienable right to self-determination and pursuit of
autonomous governance and financial independence, many developed offshore financial centres
to achieve sustainable development, with UK encouragement. Recently, and exacerbated by the
Panama and Paradise papers, these jurisdictions are subject to increased pressure and ongoing
perception that their financial centres facilitate criminality by harbouring suspect wealth, due to
lack of transparency.
This doctoral thesis concerns suspect wealth as a product of economic misconduct like
corruption, money laundering, tax evasion, fraud, and the increasingly controversial tax
avoidance. It concerns suspect wealth derived from overseas or domestic misconduct, given law
enforcement’s response is typically the same irrespective of origin. It focuses on three Overseas
Territories: Bermuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Anguilla. Through secondary research
into their legal, regulatory and compliance regimes, it sets out to answer three main questions:
How viable are international standards on suspect wealth in the context of these three
jurisdictions? How willing and able are these jurisdictions to comply with international standards
on suspect wealth? And, how can they better prevent their financial centres accepting suspect
wealth? Given these standards are envisaged at international levels, the dissertation also considers
whether a one-size-fits-all approach to the territories is appropriate. Proceeding on the basis that
receipt of suspect wealth is inimical to development, it also discusses its impact on development
for both countries from which wealth transits, as well as the overseas territories themselves, many
having fundamental development concerns.
The research finds that universalism is a desirable aspect of the modern approach to
tackling suspect wealth. However, a one-size approach is generally inappropriate for these
jurisdictions. Contextual issues pertaining to capacity, resources and underlying considerations
like the offshore confidentiality norm, mean that some standards are unviable – or that existing
frameworks may be viable alternatives. On a critical evaluation of their legislation, international
cooperation and reviews, it is suggested all territories demonstrate willingness to comply with
international standards. However, their ability and levels of compliance vary. In summary,
Bermuda demonstrates the greatest level of compliance and adherence. Turks and Caicos Islands’
compliance is a product of the last decade’s legislative and institutional reforms following
constitutional crises. It is compliant in many ways, but aspects are still under development.
Anguilla’s response is the least developed…
Subjects/Keywords: British Overseas Territory; Bermuda; The Turks and Caicos Islands; Anguilla; Suspect Wealth; Development; International Development; Money Laundering; Anti-Money Laundering; AML; Corruption; Bribery; Anti-Bribery; Tax; Beneficial Ownership; Beneficial Ownership Information; Transparency; International Cooperation; Offshore Financial Centre; Offshore Financial Centres; Tax Havens; International Financial Centres; Confidentiality; Privacy; Secrecy; Counter-Terrorism Financing; Compliance; Integrity; Development Studies; Rule of Law; Fraud; White-Collar Crime; Finance; Financial Market Regulation; Financial Market Integrity; Legal Development; Institutional Development; Financial Crime; Economic Crime; Panama papers; Paradise papers; Constitutional law; Company law; Crown Dependencies; Market Abuse; Offshore companies; Mutual Legal Assistance; Transnational Economic Crime; Tax Evasion; Tax Avoidance
to Zotero / EndNote / Reference
APA (6th Edition):
Thomas-James, D. W. R. (2019). Suspect Wealth – A Risk to Stability, Development and Sustainability: The case of Bermuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Anguilla. (Doctoral Dissertation). University of Cambridge. Retrieved from https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/293378
Chicago Manual of Style (16th Edition):
Thomas-James, Dominic William Rupert. “Suspect Wealth – A Risk to Stability, Development and Sustainability: The case of Bermuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Anguilla.” 2019. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Cambridge. Accessed January 19, 2020.
MLA Handbook (7th Edition):
Thomas-James, Dominic William Rupert. “Suspect Wealth – A Risk to Stability, Development and Sustainability: The case of Bermuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Anguilla.” 2019. Web. 19 Jan 2020.
Thomas-James DWR. Suspect Wealth – A Risk to Stability, Development and Sustainability: The case of Bermuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Anguilla. [Internet] [Doctoral dissertation]. University of Cambridge; 2019. [cited 2020 Jan 19].
Available from: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/293378.
Council of Science Editors:
Thomas-James DWR. Suspect Wealth – A Risk to Stability, Development and Sustainability: The case of Bermuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Anguilla. [Doctoral Dissertation]. University of Cambridge; 2019. Available from: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/293378