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FCMC, U.S. law enforcement authorities impose fines on three banks

Staff Writer |
The Financial and capital Market Commission (FCMC) in collaboration with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Counterproliferation Center has identified three Latvian banks, Baltikums Bank, Privatbank and Reģionālā investīciju banka which had not complied with the provisions of anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing (AML/CTF) regulatory framework.

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Violations relate to customer due diligence, including also transaction monitoring and obtaining insufficient information about the beneficiaries indicated by the customers and transactions performed.

In the period from 2009 to 2015, on several occasions several customers of those banks, making use of off-shore companies and complicated chain transactions, transferred the funds from their bank accounts, to circumvent international sanctions requirements imposed against North Korea.

Cross-border cooperation in detecting such weaknesses indicates that being aware of the risks associated with the development of Latvia as a growing regional financial centre the national supervisory authorities have ensured managing and mitigating above risks both in the AML/CTF and international sanctions areas.

The mentioned banks are cooperating with the FCMC and have admitted the identified weaknesses.

FCMC has entered into administrative agreements with the three banks that most effectively enable the banks to ensure taking immediate measures, to timely identify transactions that led to the circumventing of international sanctions and to act in line with the procedures defined in laws and regulations.

Conditions of the agreements stipulate that the banks pay the monetary fine in the total amount of 641 514 euro into the national budget within one month.

FCMC will monitor the fulfilment of the banks’ commitments under the predefined time schedules and scope.

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