HSBC fined over poor money laundering controls in South Africa
12 Nov 2018

South Africa’s Prudential Authority (PA) has fined HSBC after it identified weaknesses in its anti-money laundering (AML) and counter terror funding (CFT) systems.

The PA, which assesses the banking sector’s financial crime controls, looked at the bank’s ability to detect and report suspicious and unusual transactions.

“The administrative sanctions were imposed because certain weaknesses were identified in HSBC’s processes which inhibited HSBC from proactively detecting potential money laundering and the financing of terrorism,” the PA said.

It added that the penalty was not imposed because HSBC was found to have facilitated transactions involving money laundering or the financing of terrorism.

HSBC was fined R15 million rand (£844,927) and ordered to take remedial action.

“We can confirm that the issues identified by SARB [South African Reserve Bank] during the 2016 inspection have been fully remediated,” HSBC said, quoted in Reuters.

In Britain, regulator the Financial Conduct Authority is investigating the lender over allegations it facilitated money laundering in South Africa for the wealthy Gupta family, who have been mired in a number of corruption scandals.

The family has denied allegations of wrong doing.

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