In The News

A Top Bank Has Been RAIDED For Money Laundering!

On Friday, the headquarters of Deutsche Bank in Frankfurt was raided by investigators as part of a criminal investigation looking into potential money laundering activities.

Law enforcement officials from the prosecutor’s office, along with Germany’s BKA federal police and regulators from BaFin, raided Deutsche Bank’s headquarters in Frankfurt, armed with a search warrant based on suspicions that bank employees may have contravened anti-money laundering laws.

People familiar with the matter, revealed the ransacking was over questionable money flows processed by Deutsche Bank on behalf of lenders, whereby the bank acted as a correspondent bank conducting cross-border money flows between lenders.

More details of this incident from The Guardian report:

Deutsche Bank said the issue had been self-reported and it was “fully cooperating” with police and prosecutors who launched the raid on its offices at 10am.

“This is an investigative measure by the Frankfurt public prosecutor’s office in connection with suspicious activity reports [SARs] filed by the bank,” the lender said in a statement. “Deutsche Bank is fully cooperating with the authorities.”

Banks and other financial institutions file SARs with law enforcement bodies when they suspect a client may be using their services for potential criminal activity. However, SARs do not mean a client is guilty of wrongdoing or require a bank to cease doing business with the client.

It is understood that the issue is linked to the late filing of an SAR related to Deutsche Bank’s role as a correspondent bank, where it does business on behalf of another lender.

A spokesperson for Frankfurt’s public prosector said they could not provide any further information while the investigation was ongoing.

Deutsche Bank shares fell nearly 2.6% following the news.

According to Zero Hedge, Deutsche Bank has faced prior scrutiny for potential money laundering:

Meanwhile, Deutsche has been under the microscope for potential money laundering for years, facing nearly $700 million in fines for trades that authorities said were used to illegally launder money.

In April 2021, Germany’s market regulator BaFin criticized Deutsche Bank’s anti-money laundering (AML) controls, expanding the mandate of a special monitor placed at the bank nearly three years earlier to oversee the appropriate implementation of safeguards to comply with the German Money Laundering Act (Geldwäschegesetz).

BaFin ordered the bank to “adopt further appropriate internal safeguards” and continue improving compliance with due diligence obligations, particularly regarding customer reviews.

Here’s a statement issued by Deutsche Bank following the incident:

“This is an investigative measure by the Frankfurt public prosecutor’s office in connection with suspicious activity reports filed by the bank. Deutsche Bank is fully cooperating with the authorities.”

Sources: WLT, Reuters, Zero Hedge, The Guardian

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