When to Not Use the F-Bomb? The Standard Chartered AML Settlement


I guess it is appropriate that the word "F-Bomb" will now, as of next week and for the first time, be in the mainstream Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary. I say this while thinking about Howard Sklar’s blog post, entitled “Best.Quote.Ever”, in which he cited the following email from Standard Chartered Bank’s (SBC) Group Executive Director to its head of Compliance in New York.

You f…ing Americans. Who are you to tell us, the rest of the world, that we’re not going to deal with Iranians?

[Ed. Note - This is a PG-rated blog so we have edited the curse word. We would note that the family G-rated New York Times (NYT) cut the entire first sentence from its reporting.]

Well, as of yesterday, SBC seems to have found the understanding that if you are going to do business, in at least the state of New York, you had better follow the rules as it agreed to pay a $340MM fine to the New York state Department of Financial Services (DFS) for breaking the law. Unfortunately, the SBC settlement was just one more in long line of settlements by banks for violations of anti-money laundering (AML) laws. In an article in the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), entitled "British Bank Settles Iran Money Case", reporter Liz Rappaport cited figures from the US Department of Treasury and Justice Department regarding the largest US anti-money laundering settlements.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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