BS(A) strikes again

December 18, 2020

first_imgWhat would happen to your credit union if federal regulators and prosecutors determined that over a five year period you processed over 30 million remittances to Mexico, assigned two employees to monitor these transactions, filed a total of 9 SARS, ignored employee concerns that you were violating federal law, and then admitted to “willfully violating” The Bank Secrecy Act? I’ll tell you what would happen: Your credit union would be out of business, your top executives would be banned from the industry, and you might even find yourself on the front page of the Wall Street Journal. After all, Bethex Federal Credit Union no longer exists.Unfortunately evidence suggests that the same rules don’t apply to the largest institutions. Yesterday the justice department announced that it was entering into a non-prosecution agreement with Banamex USA, a subsidiary of Citigroup, to settle claims that it violated the Bank Secrecy Act from 2007-2012 by facilitating remittance transfers to Mexico without complying with some of the most basic requirements of the Bank Secrecy Act. The price of its “get-out-of-jail free” card is $97.4 million. This is in addition to the earlier fines paid to the FDIC. Citgroup has also announced that it was shutting down the offending bank’s operations- better late then never, I guess.The bank’s intentional oversight had real live consequences as the Non Prosecution agreement explains. “As a result of these compliance program failures, BUSA failed to file suspicious activity reports (“SARs”) on suspicious remittance transactions to Mexico that fit typologies consistent with illegal activity, such as human smuggling, fraud, and drug trafficking.” continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img

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