Standard Chartered Agrees to Pay $340 Million to NY Regulator

Standard Chartered Bank, the fifth largest in the U.K., agreed to pay a $340 million settlement to put allegations to rest that the organization modified transactions with Iranian sources over a period of at least six years between 2001 and 2007. This would be the largest amount ever paid to a single United States regulator in a money laundering case, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The Superintendent of the New York State Department of Financial Services raised a civil penalty against Standard Chartered August 6th, which alleged the London-based bank omitted or removed information that would tie up to $250 billion worth of wire payment transactions to Iranian customers. The omission withheld crucial information that U.S. law enforcement officials could have utilized to flag suspicious transaction patterns. The accusation threatened to revoke the bank’s license to transact in New York, and sent stocks plummeting.

The criminal investigation into Standard Charter’s practices is ongoing, but projected to complete in the next few weeks. In the meantime, Standard Chartered Bank hopes to settle the allegations with the payment agreement, while negotiations with the Manhattan District Attorney, the U.S. Treasury Department, Justice Department, and NY Federal Reserve continue. Furthermore, Standard Chartered agreed to two additional measures. First to put an outside monitor in place a two year period with the sole purpose of checking the bank’s compliance and controls. Second, to take anti-money laundering measures in its New York office by hiring an auditor.

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