FCA's Crypto AML Compliance Chief Steps Down

Mark Steward is stepping down as the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority's executive director of enforcement and market oversight, the regulator announced on Tuesday.

In January 2021, the FCA became the supervisory body for anti-money laundering compliance for crypto firms in the country.

"While we do not regulate or supervise the cryptocurrency business, these firms are required to be registered with the FCA and they are required to comply with the money laundering regulations," Steward said during a speech in March 2021.

At that time, the FCA had already set up the list for "unregistered" crypto companies to help investors recognize firms authorized by the FCA to operate in the country. In September, the FCA made headlines when it added billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried owned crypto exchange FTX to its list of unauthorized firms.

The FCA has previously come under fire from the crypto industry for delays in processing applications for registration, while the regulator has blamed the delays on the "quality of the information provided" by the crypto firms looking for approval.

The FCA did not reveal who will be replacing Steward in its announcement. CoinDesk has reached out to the regulator for comment.

Read more: UK Shuts Down Temporary Crypto Company Licensing Program