FINMA sanctions the Swiss bank for corruption

Monday 24 February 2020 10:45 CET | News

Switzerland-based Financial Market Authority (FINMA) has banned Julius Baer Bank, a Swiss multinational private bank, from conducting any significant acquisitions.
The decision was taken after finding that the bank failed to combat money laundering between 2009 and early 2018. The Swiss market watchdog said the irregularities at Julius Baer Bank involve the shortcomings that arose in connection with alleged cases of corruption linked to PDVSA, Venezuela’s state-owned oil company, and FIFA, the world soccer federation, as revealed by OCCRP.

In 2017, PDVSA was at the centre of a scandal which involved more than 50 of its employees suspected of embezzling USD 200 million from the company’s funds. Moreover, in 2014, Julius Baer carried out a USD 71 million transaction for a Venezuelan client, without investigating it properly, even though the bank knew that the client was facing accusations of corruption.

FINMA also noted that Julius Baer failed to collect the KYC data, which requires them to collect data on their clients’ identities, the origin and target of their money, and the reason why they chose that bank. As per the authorities, the bank provided financial services to clients who were suspected of money-launderers and failed to report suspicious cases. Also, the watchdog added that the bank incentivised the AML breaches by rewarding its client advisers almost exclusively based on financial targets. FINMA found irregularities in almost 70 business relationships and in some 150 Julius Baer transactions. 


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Keywords: Swiss bank, sanction, corruption, Switzerland, FINMA, banks, AML, PDVSA, KYC, irregularities, data, breaches, financial services, transactions
Categories: Fraud & Financial Crime
Countries: Swaziland
This article is part of category

Fraud & Financial Crime