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Money-Laundering Reporting Requirement Doesn’t Violate Rights

Dec. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Requiring lawyers to report suspicions that clients may be involved in money laundering doesn’t violate human rights standards, a European court said.

A French lawyer lost his appeal today against the national rule as the European Court of Human Rights found the requirement doesn’t infringe lawyer-client confidentiality.

The requirement was adopted in 2007 to ensure French lawyers comply with European Union anti-money laundering directives. The rule has safeguards such as requiring the report to be filed to a bar association and restricting the obligation to certain services, including property transactions.

The rule doesn’t “represent a disproportionate interference with lawyers’ professional privilege,” the Strasbourg, France-based court found, according to a statement on the decision.

To contact the reporter on this story: Heather Smith in Paris at hsmith26@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at aaarons@bloomberg.net

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