WASHINGTON – One of the world’s biggest financial centers, Standard Chartered has agreed to pay $300m over lapses in its anti-money-laundering procedures, the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) has announced.
According to the reports, the settlement comes almost exactly two years after the British bank paid a $340m fine to the DFS after it was accused of scheming with Iran to hide from US authorities billions of pounds worth of transactions.
The latest payment follows the bank’s failure to tackle problems with its anti-money laundering compliance that the New York regulator required following the 2012 settlement.
“If a bank fails to live up to its commitments, there should be consequences. That is particularly true in an area as serious as anti-money-laundering compliance, which is vital to helping prevent terrorism and vile human rights abuses,” said Benjamin Lawsky, superintendent of the DFS.
Lawsky alleged the British lender failed to catch millions of higher-risk transactions that should have triggered further investigation.
Lawsky had accused the bank of helping Iran launder about $250bn, keeping false records and handling lucrative wire transfers for Iranian clients.
The report found that one Standard Chartered executive caustically dismissed concerns from a US colleague about dealings with Iran, one of a number of countries under American sanction.
“You fucking Americans. Who are you to tell us, the rest of the world, that we’re not going to deal with Iranians,” Lawsky’s report quoted the banker as saying.
In a statement the bank said it “accepts responsibility for and regrets the deficiencies in the anti-money laundering transaction surveillance system at its New York branch. The group has already begun extensive remediation efforts and is committed to completing these with utmost urgency.”