Business as Usual and Prosecution of Financial Crime

hsbcThe latest fallout in the banks manipulating the LIBOR scandal were criminal charges against two UBS traders. LIBOR is a key financial rate and the Justice Department this week fined UBS $1.5 billion for rate rigging. The Japan UBS subsidiary also pleaded guilty to wire fraud.

UBS Securities Japan Co. Ltd. (UBS Japan), an investment bank, financial advisory securities firm and wholly-owned subsidiary of UBS AG, has agreed to plead guilty to felony wire fraud and admit its role in manipulating the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR), a leading benchmark used in financial products and transactions around the world, Attorney General Eric Holder announced today. The criminal information, filed today in U.S. District Court in the District of Connecticut, charges UBS Japan with one count of engaging in a scheme to defraud counterparties to interest rate derivatives trades by secretly manipulating LIBOR benchmark interest rates.

The Slap on the Wrist Financial and Corporate Crime Fines

corporate alliance pledgeHave you ever noticed that large corporations can get away with pretty much anything? Over and over again a major scandal breaks and in the end the fines are pennies on the dollar for the profits gained by these nefarious financial activities.

Banks can launder money with impunity and the consequences are a small fine in comparison to the profits made. No matter how egregious there are no criminal chargers or revoking of the bank's charter.

The British bank Standard Chartered said on Thursday that it expected to pay $330 million to settle claims by United States government agencies that it had moved hundreds of billions of dollars on behalf of Iran.

At first glance the record $1.9 billion HSBC fine for laundering Mexican drug cartel money looks like a solid. Yet buried in the fine print, HSBC avoids charges via deferred prosecution.

Outsourcing Has Its Benefits - Money Landering, Stock Market Crashes and Failed Projects

bubble prickAh, we all know the claim offshore outsourcing is good for America. Seems offshore outsourcing is great for drug dealers and money launders too. Did you know offshore outsourcing enabled money laundering, flash crashes and failed projects?

The latest banking scandal of Standard Chartered laundering Iranian money is all over the news. But did you know Standard Chartered Bank offshore outsourced to India their entire compliance operations?

The DFS probe found that SCB had assured the New York state in May 2010 that it would take immediate steps to comply with the US Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctions. However, another regulatory examination in 2011 found continuing and significant Anti Money Laundering failures.

Among these, the bank was outsourcing its "entire OFAC compliance process for the New York branch to Chennai, India, with no evidence of any oversight or communication between the Chennai and the New York offices."

Banks Launder Money With Impunity

laundering moneyHSBC is a bank. They are also a money launderer. Last week the Senate subcommittee on investigations, part of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, issued a report (pdf) and held a hearing, U.S. Vulnerabilities to Money Laundering, Drugs, and Terrorist Financing: HSBC Case History. Contained within is a laundry list, if we can use the pun, of HSBC evil doings and how they mechanically laundry money for drug cartels, terrorists and tax evaders.

This is over a decade past 9/11 and seemingly HSBC has been operating with impunity. One of the conduits for money laundering is correspondent banking. Correspondent banking is when one financial institution provides services to another financial institution to move funds, exchange currencies, cash monetary instruments, or carry out other financial transactions. Even though in 2002, correspondent banking was recognized as a primary method to fund terrorist activities, the doors have not been shut.

Correspondent accounts continue to provide a gateway into the U.S. financial system, and wrongdoers continue to abuse that entryway.

Below is what has been done since 9/11, yet correspondent banking is alive and well.