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Money laundering in a virtual world

Jones, Clare


Clare Jones
Associate Professor in Law


Colin King

Clive Walker

Jimmy Gurul�


Virtual currencies are a key aspect of anti-money laundering (AML) regulation. This chapter investigates the United Kingdom’s (UK) approach to virtual worlds and their virtual currencies, determining whether this currency system is included in national and international money laundering definitions and regulations. Virtual worlds can be a safe haven for criminal activity, such as money laundering, and the lack of sufficient regulation in the UK is one of the pivotal points currently being discussed at regulatory and governmental levels. The chapter is divided into several parts. First, it looks at virtual worlds, their definitions and identifies how virtual currencies are considered to be a money laundering risk. The chapter moves on to provide evidence that money laundering does take place within virtual worlds and as such should be included in the virtual currency definition and regulations. The chapter then considers the approaches taken to prevent virtual currency money laundering and explores the UK’s approach to money laundering regulations. The chapter further considers approaches of other countries compared to the UK, and concludes with an analysis and reflection of the UK’s approach to regulating virtual worlds and money laundering.


Jones, C. (2018). Money laundering in a virtual world. In C. King, C. Walker, & J. Gurulé (Eds.), The Palgrave Handbook of Criminal and Terrorism Financing Law (165-182). London: Palgrave Macmillan (part of Springer Nature).

Online Publication Date May 4, 2018
Publication Date May 23, 2018
Deposit Date Oct 3, 2017
Publicly Available Date May 5, 2020
Publisher Palgrave Macmillan (part of Springer Nature)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Pages 165-182
Book Title The Palgrave Handbook of Criminal and Terrorism Financing Law
ISBN 9783319644974
Keywords money laundering, virtual worlds
Public URL
Publisher URL


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