Habib Bank to pay $225-million New York fine for compliance failures

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Pakistan’s Habib Bank (HBL) has been fined $225 million by New York’s financial regulator, the Department of Financial Services (DFS), for failing to comply with regulations designed to combat money laundering, terrorist financing, and other illicit financial transactions.

DFS said in August it would seek to fine the bank up to $630 million. As part of a broader agreement, HBL will pay roughly a third of that while agreeing to surrender its license to operate the New York branch and being subject to other conditions.

The enforcement action followed a 2016 review in which the regulator said it found “weaknesses in the bank’s risk management and compliance” that management had failed to tackle.

The review showed HBL had failed to properly screen thousands of transactions and had processed payments for known criminals and sanctioned entities, among other failings.

“The bank has repeatedly been given more than sufficient opportunity to correct its glaring deficiencies, yet it has failed to do so,” Financial Services Superintendent Maria Vullo said in the statement.

Read more here: in.reuters.com

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