Swiss Court Seeks $45m Compensation in Credit Suisse Money Laundering Case
Federal prosecutors in Switzerland are seeking compensation of $45 million in the Credit Suisse money laundering case.
The bank was accused of not taking satisfactory measures to perform anti-money laundering screening and will face a three-week trial starting in February. After failing to prevent money laundering by a Bulgarian drug ring, Credit Suisse Group AG underwent a 14-year investigation.
The charges were listed by the Swiss criminal court in a 500-page document that stated the bank had “serious organizational shortcomings” in preventing money laundering, according to a report published Sunday by SonntagsZeitung.
The Swiss federal prosecutor claimed that the Bulgarian drug mafia, led by a former wrestler, deposited some 55 million francs at Credit Suisse. According to the report, most of the amount was reportedly hand-delivered in suitcases filled with unbundled notes. A former employee of Credit Suisse was also targeted for her role in the affair.
The bank said it “unreservedly rejects as meritless all allegations in this legacy matter raised against it and is convinced that its former employee is innocent,” according to an emailed statement. “The bank will defend itself vigorously in court.”
The current situation is the latest blow to the established bank, which recently announced that it would reserve 500 million francs for litigation this year. The bank is suffering from huge losses related to the fall of Archegos Capital Management and Geensill Capital.
The bank’s latest progress was hindered when the former chairman Antonio Horta-Osorio was terminated after nine months on the job.
This money laundering case is the second time the Swiss federal prosecutor has taken a bank to court after the Falcon bank got involved in money laundering linked to the Malaysian sovereign wealth fund 1MDB.
Apart from the federal prosecutor’s compensation claim, Credit Suisse faces an additional maximum penalty of 5 million francs.