LAWYER Mel Georgie Racela has been appointed as the new executive director of the Anti-Money Laundering Council Secretariat (AMLCS).
AMLC, in a statement, said the Monetary Board of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas confirmed the appointment of Racela, who was previously named as the officer-in-charge when Julia Bacay-Abad quit from the post last January.
It said that under Racela's leadership, the Secretariat's investigations were aligned with the national campaign against drug trafficking, counter-financing of terrorism, and graft and corruption.
"Vital administrative changes were also initiated to maximize the AMLC's investigative and legal capabilities," AMLC said.
According to AMLC, Racela's vision is for the AMLC Secretariat to be a world class financial intelligence unit that takes an active role in enhancing financial system integrity.
"His goals are to align policies and rules with international standards and to firmly enforce the law and the rules while nurturing a culture of compliance among covered persons," it said.
Racela aims to elevate the country's international ratings, such as those made by the Financial Action Task Forces.
Racela has been with the BSP for 21 years, serving as examiner in the Supervision and Examination Sector, a lawyer in the Office of the General Counsel and Legal Services, an investigator of the AMLC Secretariat's Compliance and Investigation Group, and as head of the Anti-Money Laundering Specialist Group.
Prior to becoming the OIC at AMLCS, Racela was deputy director for the Special Projects and Reports Group of the Office of Supervisory Policy Development.
A certified public accountant, Racela obtained his undergraduate degree from De La Salle University and law degree from San Beda College. He also holds a Masters of Law in International Legal Studies from Georgetown University Law Center, Washington, D.C. (SDR/SunStar Philippines)