Looks like the Banksters are at it again.
HSBC testified before the United States Senate yesterday and disclosed some extremely troubling information, from the Guardian:
Executives with Europe’s biggest bank, HSBC, were subjected to a humiliating onslaught from US senators on Tuesday over revelations that staff at its global subsidiarieslaundered billions of dollars for drug cartels, terrorists and pariah states.
Yes, Europe’s largest bank is in the money laundering business.
A report compiled for the committee detailed how HSBC’s subsidiaries transported billions of dollars of cash in armoured vehicles, cleared suspicious travellers’ cheques worth billions, and allowed Mexican drug lords buy to planes with money laundered through Cayman Islands accounts.Other subsidiaries moved money from Iran, Syria and other countries on US sanctions lists, and helped a Saudi bank linked to al-Qaida to shift money to the US.
This is what Wall Street does. This is how they act. They are rootless parasites with no loyalty nor concern for the countries that they operate or are chartered in.
HSBC’s Mexican operations moved $7bn into the bank’s US operations, and according to its own staff, much of that money was tied to drug traffickers. Before the bank executives testified, the committee heard from Leigh Winchell, assistant director for investigative programs at US immigration & customs enforcement. He said 47,000 people had lost their lives since 2006 as a result of Mexican drug traffickers.The senators highlighted testimony from Leopoldo Barroso, a former HSBC anti money-laundering director, who told company officials in an exit interview that he was concerned about “allegations of 60% to 70% of laundered proceeds in Mexico” going through HSBC’s affiliate.
Hey children of the 1st world – don’t do drugs… work hard, go to a great college, get a premier job in banking… then launder money so other kids can do drugs!
But wait you can also launder money for rogue states and terrorists!
The bank circumvented US sanctions on countries including Cuba and Iran, says the report. In one case examined by the committee, two HSBC affiliates processed 25,000 transactions involving $19.4bn over seven years without disclosing the transactions’ links to Iran.
The bank provided US dollars and banking services to banks in Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh despite links to terrorist financing, says the report.
In another example of lax controls the report says HSBC cleared $290m over four years in suspicious US travellers cheques for a Japanese bank, benefiting Russians who claimed to be in the used car business.
HSBC’s boss said on Monday revelations of lax anti-money laundering controls had been “shameful and embarrassing” for Europe’s biggest bank, and may force it to pay out well over $2 billion for those flaws and in compensation for UK mis-selling.
HSBC set aside $700 million to cover fines and other costs for an anti-money laundering scandal, after a U.S. Senate report criticised it this month for letting clients shift funds from dangerous and secretive countries, notably Mexico.
The ultimate cost could be “significantly higher”, the bank’s Chief Executive Stuart Gulliver said.
In the wake of the scandal HSBC’s compliance director has resigned, from Bloomberg:
HSBC Holdings Plc (HSBA)’s head of group compliance, David Bagley, told a Senate hearing he will step down amid claims the bank gave terrorists, drug cartels and criminals access to the U.S. financial system by failing to guard against money laundering.
But beyond the general admissions there was one extremely troubling revelation that came out of the hearings. From Business Insider’s Report Shows How HSBC Maintained Its Ties With One Of Osama Bin Laden’s Key Benefactors:
Yesterday, the Senate released a report on HSBC’s ties to the darkest actors in global finance. Today, the details of the 335 page investigation are trickling out and shocking everyone…
One of the most damning parts of the report details HSBC’s relationship with Saudi based Al Rajhi Bank, a member of Osama bin Ladin’s ‘Golden Chain’ of important Al Qaeda financiers. The relationship has spanned decades, perhaps that is why even when HSBC’s own internal compliance offices asked that it be terminated in 2005, even when the US government discovered hard evidence of Al Rajhi’s relationship with terrorism, HSBC continued to business with the bank until 2010…
It doesn’t stop there: Al Rahji is also known for financial services to 9/11 hijacker Abdulaziz al Omari, who was on American Airlines flight 11.