Languages
Page last updated at 01:01 GMT, Saturday, 10 January 2009

Lloyds pays $350m to end US case

LLoyds TSB sign
Lloyds TSB said it had taken steps to improve regulation

UK-based bank Lloyds TSB has agreed to pay a $350m penalty to US authorities over financial transfers that violated US sanctions.

The US Justice Department said Lloyds TSB had acknowledged "criminal conduct" and agreed to forfeit the funds in return for an end to its investigation.

Prosecutors said the bank faked records so clients in Iran, Libya and Sudan could do business with US institutions.

Lloyds TSB said that it had cooperated fully with the probe.

"We are committed to running our business with the highest levels of integrity and regulatory compliance across all of our operations, and have undertaken a range of significant steps to further enhance our compliance programmes," it said in a statement.

Wire transfers

US prosecutors said that the bank's misconduct took place between 1995 and 2007.

"For more than 12 years, Lloyds facilitated the anonymous movement of hundreds of millions of dollars from US-sanctioned nations through our financial system," Assistant Attorney General Matthew Friedrich said.

According to court documents, Lloyds removed information such as customer names, bank names and addresses so that wire transfers would pass undetected through filters at US banks.

This process - known as stripping - meant that more than $350m (230m at current exchange rates) that might otherwise have been blocked was processed by US institutions.

Lloyds TSB had agreed to forfeit half the money to the US and half to New York County.

In return, the Justice Department would recommend that charges against the bank be dismissed in two years, it said.

Lloyds said it had set aside 180m last year against a possible settlement - before sterling weakened against the US dollar - and it did "not anticipate any further enforcement actions".

The US prohibits certain countries, institutions and individuals from accessing the US banking system, based on its foreign policy and national security goals.

It lifted sanctions on Libya in 2004, but measures remain in place against Iran and Sudan.



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
US will back new Iran sanctions
23 Feb 08 |  Middle East
US wants tougher Iran sanctions
21 Feb 07 |  Middle East

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific