16 Nov 2020
Colombia’s banking watchdog fined one of the banks of Colombia’s richest man for the 12th time for evading money laundering prevention regulations, according to local media.
The Superintendent for Finance’s imposed the $137,000 fine on the Banco de Occidente, one of the banks of Luis Carlos Sarmiento‘s banking conglomerate Grupo Aval.
According to news website La Nueva Prensa, the fine is the 12th that’s been imposed on the bank since 2001.
The same bank and another Grupo Aval subsidiary, Banco de Bogota, are reportedly being investigated by the US Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission over a $10 million money laundering operation.
This laundering operation allegedly was carried out by the conglomerate’s international bank, BAC Credomatic, and would be related to the Odebrecht bribery scandal that implicates Sarmiento’s son and a third Grupo Aval subsidiary, Corficolombiana.
In Colombia, Grupo Aval owns five banks, the country’s largest pension fund and multiple stock broking companies.
By Adriaan Alsema, Colombia Reports, 15 November 2020
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