EU proposes new anti-money laundering body in wake of scandals
In a recent Financial Times story, it was reported that the EU is proposing to set up a new anti-money laundering body in the wake of recent money laundering scandals.
EU finance ministers are expected to meet in December and propose the setting up of a new independent body to enforce money laundering prevention measures across the EU.
The proposal would trigger a significant increase in the response to a wave of money-laundering scandals that have occurred since 2017. These scandals have revealed weaknesses in the EU banking system which have been exploited by criminals.
The two most notable recent scandals have involved two of Europe’s most high profile banks: Danske Bank and Deutsche Bank.
US law enforcement authorities uncovered institutionalised money laundering in 2018, at the now defunct Latvian bank ABLV — much of it linked to Russia. This was just one in a series of serious blows to European confidence in its banking system’s defence against crime.
Another setback involved revelations that €200bn in suspicious transactions had been moved through Danske Bank’s Estonian branch. ING was fined €775m for compliance failings and Deutsche Bank was ensnared in a scheme to illicitly shift criminal funds from Russia to the west.
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