World

Major banks move vast sums of dirty money: Investigative report

WASHINGTON: Massive sums of allegedly dirty money have flowed for years through some of the world's largest banks, said an international journalism investigation published on Sunday. It denounced shortcomings in sector regulations.

"Profits from deadly drug wars, fortunes embezzled from developing countries, and hard-earned savings stolen in a Ponzi scheme were all allowed to flow into and out of these financial institutions, despite warnings from the banks' own employees," according to the probe from Buzzfeed News and the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists(ICIJ).

The investigation, which was led by 108 international media outlets from 88 different countries, is based on thousands of suspicious activity reports submitted to the US Treasury Department's financial law enforcement agency, FinCEN, by banks from around the world.

"These documents, compiled by banks, shared with the government, but kept from public view, expose the hollowness of banking safeguards, and the ease with which criminals have exploited them," wrote US outlet Buzzfeed News, in the introduction of its report.

The documents relate to US$2 trillion (S$2.7 trillion) in transactions that circulated between 1999 and 2017. - AFP

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