Sweden’s financial watchdog fines leading private banking company for AML deficiencies

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Sweden’s financial supervisory authority Finansinspektionen (FI) has imposed an administrative fine of SEK 1 billion ($107 million) on Swedish banking company Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB (SEB) for AML deficiencies. SEB failed to appropriately identify the risk of money-laundering in its Baltic operations. Its governance of the AML procedures in the Baltic subsidiary banks was also unsatisfactory.

Despite SEB’s recent efforts to address its AML deficiencies, FI identified that the bank was non-compliant with AML regulations between 2015 and the first quarter of 2019. FI found the bank was deficient in identifying and addressing the risk of money-laundering associated with some of their non-resident customers and resident customers with non-resident owners. SEB also did not invest sufficient resources in its internal control functions and transaction monitoring. Hence, FI has ordered the bank to undertake specific measures for monitoring transactions.

Supervisory authorities in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania also collaborated with the Swedish authority to investigate SEB’s subsidiaries. SEB’s Estonian subsidiary has received a fine from the Estonian financial supervisory authority for AML violations. Its subsidiaries in Latvia and Lithuania have also been reprimanded in the past.