In the US, Wells Fargo was fined $97.8 million due to violations related to sanctions.
These violations were committed in the period from 2010 to 2015. The bank has reached settlements in the amount of $67.8 million with the Federal Reserve Board and $30 million with the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). Both regulators announced this in their statements published last Thursday, March 30.
Wells Fargo has not provided adequate oversight of the risks associated with the sanctions measures. The bank also ignored the sanctions of the United States. The financial institution provided a trade finance platform to a foreign organization that used this platform to process prohibited transactions in the amount of $532 million in the period from 2010 to 2015. The relevant information is contained in the press release of the Federal Reserve System.
With the help of software provided by Wells Fargo and Wachovia Bank, a foreign bank located in Europe processed financial operations that violated the sanctions regime against Syria, Sudan, and Iran.
Wachovia, on the instructions of a middle-level manager, has set up a software platform for trade insourcing for general use by the European bank, which has added to the list of participants in trade finance operations persons against whom sanctions have been imposed by the US authorities. OFAC notes that the financial institution should have known what actions the European bank was going to perform through the use of the platform.
A representative of Wells Fargo said that the financial institution is satisfied with the settlement of the inherited problem. He also noted that the bank voluntarily reported violations and cooperated with OFAC and the Federal Reserve Board during the proceedings.
As part of other sanctions-related activities, in September 2022, OFAC imposed restrictive measures against 10 individuals and two legal entities associated with the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). These individuals were caught of involvement in crimes in the virtual space, including extortion and espionage.
In August 2022, OFAC imposed sanctions against Tornado Cash. This organization was convicted of participating in the process of laundering virtual currency worth more than $7 billion.
As we have reported earlier, Wells Fargo Launches Digital Platform for Wealth Management Customers.