Featured Regulatory Update

U.S. sanctions Latvian oligarch charged with corruption

The United States on Monday sanctioned Aivars Lembergs, the suspended mayor of Latvia’s seaport city of Ventspils and an oligarch with substantial influence in the country’s politics, over alleged corruption, the U.S. Treasury said in a statement. According to the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), Lembergs controls “entities… Read More

EU to consider tougher tax haven listing

A group of European Union countries is calling for the bloc to cast a wider net when listing tax havens and to consider imposing stricter sanctions for countries facilitating tax avoidance, according to an EU document and an EU official. The document, prepared by the Danish government and seen by… Read More

Vatican investments linked to global money laundering investigations

A fund in which the Vatican’s Secretariat of State has invested tens of millions of euros has links to two Swiss banks investigated or implicated in bribery and money laundering scandals involving more than one billion dollars. The fund is under investigation by Vatican authorities. The fund, Centurion Global Fund,… Read More
9th December 2019
European Union finance ministers on Thursday backed plans for greater powers to combat money laundering after a series of revelations about large amounts of dirty money flowing through European banks. The EU last year experienced its largest money-laundering scandal when it emerged that 200 billion euros ($220 billion) in suspicious… Read More
6th December 2019
Credit Suisse Group AG has acted to block Geneva prosecutors from using details of a critical report by the country’s financial regulator into the bank’s failure to prevent fraud at its wealth management unit. The bank asked Geneva prosecutor Yves Bertossa to seal the report, which he is legally… Read More
6th December 2019
Over 300 reports of suspicious transactions at Satabank worth in excess of €130 million have been flagged by global services firm EY since it was entrusted to administer the bank’s assets by the financial regulator. The move had followed the suspension of the bank’s licence by the Malta Financial Services… Read More
5th December 2019
The Trump administration is moving forward on calls to classify Mexican drug cartels as terrorist organizations after the killing of nine U.S. citizens in Mexico, with top officials seeking to reach a decision this week, according to three people familiar with the matter. President Donald Trump is scheduled to meet… Read More
5th December 2019
A Russian wire transfer service popular among Tajik migrant labourers has been cut off from the Central Asian nation’s banking system, it said on Wednesday, after Dushanbe rerouted all remittances into a new processing centre. More than a million Tajiks work in Russia, sending home about $2.6 billion a year… Read More
4th December 2019
U.S. financial regulators need to issue additional guidance for bank examiners charged with reviewing how lenders monitor accounts held for money transmitting businesses, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) said Tuesday.  In a 79-page report on why banks have shed accounts for the firms in recent years, the GAO concluded… Read More
4th December 2019
Banks are no longer required to file suspicious activity reports on customers who cultivate hemp, industry regulators said. A group of financial regulators on Tuesday clarified the compliance requirements for banks whose customers produce hemp, a variety of the cannabis plant that is often used for its fiber… Read More
4th December 2019
Europe’s finance chiefs are to confront a wave of money-laundering scandals within the banking industry by recommending that a regional agency be formed to prevent such crimes. Officials will call on the European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, to further consider and make a proposal for setting up a common… Read More
3rd December 2019
The European Commission has asked Malta to clarify how it intends to address Bank of Valletta’s shortcomings over its monitoring of foreign customers who applied to buy Maltese citizenship under a so-called “golden passport” scheme. Malta, with a population of only 420,000, has sought to attract foreign capital with schemes… Read More
3rd December 2019
Dutch crypto startups are crying foul as regulators in the Netherlands look to implement the European Union’s 5th Anti-Money Laundering Directive (AMLD5) ahead of a Jan. 10 deadline. The firms, which include exchanges and software developers, say authorities are subverting the democratic process and trying to right past wrongs that… Read More