At the Western Canada Chapter of the Association of Certified Financial Crime Specialists, our purpose is to be builders of a stronger financial crime community. In order to accomplish this, we place our members and the financial crime-fighting community at the center of our world. We take a collaborative approach to create a financial economic crime community and meaningful training arming at financial crime fighters
Western Canada Chapter
Western Canada Chapter
The mission of the ACFCS Western Canada Chapter is to connect financial crime professionals from across British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. In collaboration with ACFCS, we strive to further the association’s purpose of building a stronger financial crime prevention community. We are dedicated to fostering an open and collaborative approach to identifying, deterring, and combatting financial crime, through education and the sharing of best practices.
The Chapter Board
Nicole Sy (Co-Chair) currently works in investigations at Canadian Western Bank, reviewing accounts and activities to ensure they remain within the bank’s acceptable risk appetite. Her main goal is to make a positive and impactful difference in AML/ATF in Western Canada through her initiatives and connections in the compliance industry.
Prior to her current role, Nicole worked for 10 years at Vancouver Bullion and Currency Exchange, where she played a vital role in the company’s strong compliance regime and provided support to over 70 employees across multiple locations to ensure that their business practices were following all AML regulations while servicing tens of thousands of clients globally doing an average of 3 billion dollars in transactions a year.
Nicole strives to maintain an active presence in the AML community. She became ACAMS certified in 2016 and ACFCS certified in 2020. She also served on the board of directors for ACAMS Vancouver for 3 years prior to joining ACFCS Western Canada.
Alessandro Tocco (Co-Chair) is a business professional with over 10 years of experience in finance, compliance, and regulatory enforcement. His work experience spans from working with a top tier provincial securities regulator, to working in capital markets with one of the largest investment banks in the world. Throughout his career, Alessandro has honed his expertise in administrative and criminal financial investigations, mentorship, and regulation. During Alessandro’s time working in Europe, he was given a leadership opportunity that taught him valuable interpersonal and time management skills. He has extensive knowledge of AML policy and procedure and Compliance standards and best practices. Additionally, Alessandro’s intimate knowledge of market abuse activities and market surveillance systems makes him a critical asset to an organization’s AML, Compliance and Risk teams. Currently Alessandro is working in a management role within the AML function of a crypto currency exchange.
Veronica Ramcharan (Programming Director) is a Policy Advisor for the Government of Manitoba and provides research, policy analysis, and coordination support on key files in managing Manitoba’s relationships with the federal, provincial, and territorial governments. Prior to joining the Government of Manitoba, Veronica was a Senior Advisor to the Executive Director at the International Monetary Fund in Washington DC. She also previously served as a Senior Economist for the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago.
She has over 20 years of experience in the financial/economic environment, strategic management, coordinating and monitoring complex multi-party initiatives in the intergovernmental sphere and financial sectors, along with a working knowledge of Information Technology demands and the ability to identify opportunities for IT-enabled business efficiency improvements.
Veronica has a Master’s in Business Administration from Heriot-Watt University, a BSc in Information Systems & Management from the University of London, and holds both the Certified Financial Crime Specialist and Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist designations, as well as diplomas in Human Resources Management, Investment Products & Characteristics and Safety Management Policies & Procedures.
Veronica has co-authored articles on the risks associated with correspondent banking relationships and the consequences of financial exclusion in the Caribbean and small states, which have been published in the Huffington Post, Seeking Alpha, and EconoMonitor websites and continue to be cited by many global institutions.
Kane Porter (Communications Director) is a Vice President at Talaris Financial Corp., a Canadian deal advisory firm. Kane began his career in audit and assurance and has since worked with forensic groups, as well as domestic and international financial service and energy corporations. He has provided investigative and litigation support in a variety of fields including financial crime, intellectual property, and business acquisitions. In addition to ACFCS, Kane is actively involved with various other councils, panels and working groups.
Nelu Sund (Membership Director) is a Compliance Consultant with over twenty years of experience in the payments and money services industries. She is currently serving as the Country Manager for global consulting ﬁrm, PayCompliance, oﬀering her guidance and expertise to both local and international businesses.
Nelu previously served as the Head of Audits and Compliance of a national MSB and was integral in the evaluation, development and implementation of internal programs and systems, and recommendations for future strategic initiatives. Nelu is experienced with all elements of the Compliance Program, including: policy and procedure development; training program design and delivery; assessing risk; conducting internal audits; and leading eﬀectiveness reviews and regulatory exams in Canada, United States and the European region.
Nelu is an active mentor supporting both Compliance and Non-Compliance professionals, across the globe and supports candidates of both the CFCS and CAMS certiﬁcations programs, through both group and one to one mentoring. She is dedicated to supporting the AML/Compliance community through education and mentorship and passionate about expanding her knowledge in the areas of Blockchain, Cryptocurrencies, NFT’s and the Metaverse.
Nelu is currently certiﬁed as a Certiﬁed Anti-Money Laundering Specialist (CAMS), Certiﬁed Financial Crime Specialist (CFCS), a Certiﬁed Bitcoin Professional (CBP) and also possesses the Chainalysis Cryptocurrency Fundamentals Certiﬁcation (CCFC).
Julie Gauthier (Secretary) is a Vancouver-based Senior Anti-Money Laundering Consultant at Vancity. She was previously the deputy chief anti-money laundering officer at another credit union.
Julie is highly skilled in mortgage and bank fraud investigations and has managed AML/ATF reporting, investigations, and compliance teams in Toronto and Vancouver. Her experience includes AML/ATF: enterprise program development, board reporting, policy writing, testing, risk assessment, training, and monitoring system implementations in the big bank and credit union industries.
Julie has been a certified financial crime specialist since 2014. She is also a certified AML specialist and a certified fraud examiner. She earned her Bachelor of Psychology from the University of Ottawa.
Julie enjoys time outside with her wife and family on the unceded lands of the Tsleil-Waututh and Squamish peoples.
Trina Richards (Treasurer) spent 20 years in the banking and investment industry both in Canada and the U.K. She transitioned into securities regulation in 2018 when she joined the Enforcement Division at the Alberta Securities Commission.rofessional (CCEP).
See What Certified Financial Crime Specialists Are Saying
"The CFCS tests the skills necessary to fight financial crime. It's comprehensive. Passing it should be considered a mark of high achievement, distinguishing qualified experts in this growing specialty area."
KENNETH E. BARDEN
"It's a vigorous exam. Anyone passing it should have a great sense of achievement."
(CFCS, Official Superior
de Cumplimiento Cidel
Bank & Trust Inc. Nueva York)
"The exam tests one's ability to apply concepts in practical scenarios. Passing it can be a great asset for professionals in the converging disciplines of financial crime."
(CFCS, Royal Band of
"The Exam is far-reaching. I love that the questions are scenario based. I recommend it to anyone in the financial crime detection and prevention profession."
(CFCS, CAMS Lead Compliance
Trainer, FINRA, Member Regulation
Training, Washington, DC)
"This certification comes at a very ripe time. Professionals can no longer get away with having siloed knowledge. Compliance is all-encompassing and enterprise-driven."
CFCS, CAMS, CFE, CSAR
Director, Global Risk
& Investigation Practice
FTI Consulting, Los Angeles