For the first time, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has pursued criminal charges for money laundering.
How did NatWest fail to comply with money laundering regulations in this case? With amounts of cash so large, they broke the black bin liners on the way to the bank and did not fit in the branch safe - the warning signs were certainly there.
The article reports that branch staff did not initially raise concern, and when they did report it, senior members at the bank seemingly ignored these reports.
When the client was onboarded, the bank understood that no cash would be involved, yet of the £365 million deposited with the bank, around £264 million was in cash, and no subsequent action was taken.
This event illustrates the need for both businesses and banks to put the proper procedures and processes in place, and also the need to ensure that all staff are trained to avoid further action from the FCA.
If you feel that your money laundering processes and procedures are in need of a review, our Regulatory Solutions team would be pleased to assist.
Bin bags of laundered cash lands NatWest £265m fine