Barclays France Doing A Pretty Poor Job At Compliance, Says Guy In Charge Of Barclays France's Compliance

Philippe Hébert see a lot of room for improvement.
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Just a little constructive criticism, but money-laundering, for example, is something everyone might want to consider doing a better job preventing. If you're into that sort of thing.

The Financial Times has seen a letter dated April 5 from Philippe Hébert, chief risk officer of Barclays France, to Tony Blanco, chief executive of Barclays France, alleging serious shortfalls in the bank’s standards of controls, compliance and conduct. Mr Hébert says: “I am following up the message I sent you on March 3, regarding serious mismanagement at cashier level and the particularly poor handling of this situation by the various control services and lines of defence, even though it carries serious risks of money laundering, especially at branches already known to be at risk (such as Biarritz).” The letter cites several cases of suspicious activity that Mr Hébert claims the bank has failed to take seriously enough. These include unusually high levels of repeated, large cash withdrawals by customers of just below the €10,000 limit at its Biarritz branch — on 38 occasions by one client — and the detention of staff in its Nantes branch by police on suspicion of money laundering.

Barclays’ risk officer in France alleges laundering and mis-selling failures [FT]

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Have you ever had construction going on nearby your home? Was it loud? Annoying? Did keep it keep you up in the middle of the night? Did you seriously consider opening your window and screaming "Hey! Shut the hell up down there!" or even confronting the people making all that racket face to face? Olivier Desbarres can relate. Or at least he can half relate. Because while most of you were probably talked out of making some sort of scene, either by your significant other or your own impulse control, on October 20th Desbarres decided to go in another direction, the one that involved introducing himself to the construction workers building a house near his own by screaming "I'm gonna go after you, I will haunt you, I'm gonna burn your fucking house down, I will find your fucking family," a task he noted would be fairly simple and straightforward ("I can find [them] very easily," he explained, "I'm a man with resources"), in case there were doubts (a fairly reasonable concern, as there are a lot of people in Singapore and how were these guys supposed to know he had an army of Barclays researchers at his disposal?). Still worried that the group wasn't taking his threats seriously on account of the casual look he was sporting that morning-- shorts and sandals-- Desbarres then picked up some sheet metal and launched it in their direction, presumably to demonstrate he meant business.* Although that would have been a good time to make his exit, at that point Desbarres noticed that one of the men had been recording him without his consent, leading to: “You’re filming me? You think that’s good? Put your fucking phone down because I’m going to wait for you to come out and take that phone and shove it up your fucking ass.” According to one local publication, this whole thing started because the construction crew began working at 8:45am one day in October instead of 9am, the time Desbarres preferred. In related news, according to a person familiar with Barclays' policies concerning construction site meltdowns, "We consider such behavior and language unacceptable. It does not meet the high standard of conduct that we expect of our employees." Desbarres, who is no longer with the bank, has not yet returned Dealbreaker's call for comment.** Foul-mouth foreigner threatens workers and warns he will hunt down their families [Stomp] Barlcays Far Too Candid Camera [Sunday Times via Ian Fraser] Barclays Capital Appoints Olivier Desbarres as Head of FX Strategy, Asia-Pacific Ex-Japan [BarCap] Related (re: Barclays employees losing their shit in public): Barclays Global Head of Investment Banking Writes Tear-Stained Letter To Son’s School, Demands Teacher’s Firing For Trash Talking Barclays, Making Son Cry *Insane ranting + shorts + sandals can leave room for interpretation re: is this guy serious or not; insane ranting + shorts + sandals + grabbing whatever shit from a construction site is within arm's reach and throwing at people is generally-- though not always!-- pretty clear. **Possibly because we called in the middle of the night local time and he is on his way to New York to throw a piece of sheetrock at us; you know how he gets when his sleep is interrupted.