FSG Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Task Force – The Professions

Webinar Recording

The Financial Services Group Of Livery Companies (FSG) Task Force supports the Sheriffs of the City of London in their express desire to strengthen and simplify Anti-Money Laundering (AML) within the UK. As part of the taskforce’s series of webinars exploring AML, this webinar featured representation from the following professions:

  • Accountancy
  • Legal
  • Actuarial

And was chaired by Alderman & Sheriff Professor Michael Mainelli.

The format was a semi-structured conversation questioning:

  • How do AML procedures and regulations affect a professional firm?
  • Does AML bureaucracy worsen trade and revenues?
  • Has technology made a difference? A positive difference? If not, why?
  • Is the UK really gold-plated, or just inefficient?
  • How could regulators and government help improve the situation?
  • What would you most recommend to strengthen AML, to simplify AML?


Graeme Gordon is a chartered accountant and prior to joining Praxity was Managing Director and Senior Tutor of Emile Woolf Group, the international training and development firm. He was also previously Group Finance Director of a technology company listed on the London Stock Exchange. Graeme has extensive international experience including in Europe, Russia, North America, the Far East, the Indian Sub-Continent and the Middle East. Before becoming a chartered accountant Graeme served as an officer in the Royal Navy. He is a member of the Council of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and formerly twice President of the Thames Valley Chartered Accountants.

Heather Brehcist is Head of Professional Standards at the Chartered Institute of Taxation. This role encompasses AML as well as professional standards. As a government appointed Anti-Money Laundering supervisor the CIOT supervises its members who are in practice as tax advisers. Being a Supervisor involves a wide range of activities including carrying out AML inspection visits, providing guidance and a helpline for members, liaison with fellow AML supervisors (of which there are 25) OPBAS (the oversight body the professional body AML Supervisors) and law enforcement. Before joining CIOT Heather worked for HMRC and a Big 4 Firm.

Mark Spofforth is a Chartered Accountant who has spent most of his career working for his family firm in Sussex, now merged into Kreston Reeves LLP a £30m turnover practice with an international network.

He served as President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales in 2012 having served on Council for 20 years, chairing various committees, and served on the UK Takeover Panel. Mark spent 6 years making weekly broadcasts on local BBC Radio on financial matters, wrote a monthly column for Accountancy Age on practice management, and has lectured internationally on accountancy topics, including at the 2010 World Congress of Accountants.

His international experience includes a 6 year period on the International Accounting Education Standards Board, a standard setting body of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), and visits to regulators and other professional bodies on every continent. He is now an Observer to the IFAC Board. He was awarded the OBE in 2014 for services to the accountancy profession.

Mark has been Master of two City Livery Companies, the Horners and Chartered Accountants. He was High Sheriff for West Sussex for 2016-17.

Monday, 18 May 2020

12:30 - 13:15 BST



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  • graemegordong.png
    Graeme Gordon
    Chief Executive Officer
  • Heather Brehcist.jpg
    Heather Brehcist
    Head of Professional Standards
    Chartered Institute of Taxation
  • Mark Spofforth OBE.jpg
    Mark Spofforth OBE
    Kreston Reeves LLP
  • michael Mainelli.png
    Alderman & Sheriff Professor Michael Mainelli
    Executive Chairman
    Z/Yen Group

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