Second British bank caught evading Iran sanctions
The British owned Standard Chartered Bank has been accused of laundering $250 billion to Iranian banks over 60,000 transactions by The New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) on Monday.
The department which made the charge against Standard Chartered Bank for breaches in security measures from 2001 to 2010. A statement by the NYDFS labeled the bank a “rogue institution.”
Concerns over the use of Iranian assets to finance their nuclear projects lead to sanctions by both the UN and US law. US sanctions came into effect in 2008 and limited transactions with Iranian financial institutions.
The alleged breaches refer to “U-turn transactions" which is where money is routed to an American bank and then transferred straight back out to a different institution in order to "clean" the money. According to the NYDFS statement this "left the U.S. financial system vulnerable to terrorists, weapons dealers, drug kingpins and corrupt regimes.” Standard Chartered Bank are then accused of deleting records of dealings with these companies and others which are listed in sanctions such as the Central Bank of Iran and Bank Saderat. This is an alleged violation of US laws through falsifying business records and obstructing a government administration.
This is the second incident involving British banks and the illegal flow of money through the US after HSBC was found to have dealt with Iranian banks and Mexican drug cartels.
Standard Chartered Bank will hire an independent monitor to investigate compliance at the Bank with state and federal laws.