Barclays is the latest financial institution required to pay fines to US authorities for allowing financial transactions to take place between nations that were under US sanctions and the US banking system. Barclays has agreed to pay 190 million pounds, or $298 million. Lloyds Banking Group and Credit Suisse have also reached settlements this past year with the US authorities.
The fines came about after Federal US authorities launched an investigation with the New York County District Attorney into whether financial institutions purposely removed information about the origin and destination of transactions that came into the US banking system.
Lloyds agreed to a $350 million settlement after admitting altering wire transfer information enabling Iranian and Sudanese clients to access the US banking system. Credit Suisse admitted to covering up the identities of clients wiring funds into the US banking system and agreed to a $536 million settlement.
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) paid a 5.6 million pound fine to the Financial Services Authority for failing to ensure that funds were not transferred to terrorists groups or other people under Treasury sanctions. RBS did not deliberately conceal client identities but rather failed to have a check list in place to prevent the infractions.
In filed court documents it was revealed that Barclays will forfeit $149 million in an agreement with the US Justice Department and another $149 in agreement with the New York County District Attorney’s office. The Bank must implement new compliance and training measures. The criminal information filed in court stated that for almost 11 years through September 2006 Barclays hid transactions for banks and other entities that were facing US sanctions, including banks from Cuba, Iran, Sudan, Burma, and Libya. Prosecutors credited the bank for voluntarily disclosing its actions and cooperating with authorities.