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Tuesday 25.09.2018 | Name days: Rauls, Rodrigo

US: HSBC serviced drug cartels and terrorists

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British bank HSBC Holdings Plc acted as financier to clients seeking to transfer shadowy funds from the world’s most dangerous corners, including Mexico, Iran, the Cayman Islands, Saudi Arabia and Syria, the U.S. Senate says.

Its report also slams regulators for failing to properly monitor HSBC, reports Reuters.

The failings and lax controls inside HSBC include an inability to properly monitor $15 billion in bulk cash transactions, ignoring risks in doing business in countries such as Mexico.

Besides, it is also stressed in the report that both Mexican and U.S. authorities warned HSBC that such a huge amount of money could only have reached such a level if it was tied to illegal narcotics proceeds.

The Senate also points out that some of the money that moved through HSBC was tied to Iran. This violates U.S. prohibitions on transactions linked to it and other countries.

In addition, the Senate probe also examined banking HSBC did in Saudi Arabia with Al Rajhi Bank, which is believed to have links to financing terrorism.

On Tuesday, July 17, the bank and the regulator are due to take part in a hearing about how the abuses were allowed to continue. It should be added that regulatory action was taken against HSBC already back in 2010.

“Important lessons for the whole industry in seeking to prevent illicit actors entering the global financial system,” HSBC says.

As reported, the bank is also suspected of having manipulated interbank lending rates. Last month, it emerged that the bank alongside with four other major British banks allegedly manipulated London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) and the Euro Interbank Offered Rate (Euribor).

UK bank Barclays has already been fined £290 million, while the probe still continues in such banks as Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, Citigroup and JPMorgan.

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