Even by Credit Suisse’s admittedly low standards—which allegedly include but are not limited to: tax evasion services, defrauding clients, market manipulation, collusion, bribery, bank accounts for the world’s most unsavory people, spying on each and every employee except the ones breaking the law, conveniently-timed shredding programs, and paying as little attention to all of the above as possible—murder, suitcases full of cash and cocaine trafficking are fairly startling accusations. Startling enough to get Swiss authorities to do something they’d never done before: criminally charge one of their own major banks, one of the ones with “Swiss” right in the name. And Credit Suisse, whose inability to get out of its own way may yet sufficiently outrage the Swiss people enough to do something about Swiss banking, now has another first to its name: a criminal conviction for failing to prevent laundering money for the Bulgarian mob.
“These deficiencies enabled the withdrawal of the criminal organization’s assets, which was the basis for the conviction of the bank’s former employee for qualified money laundering,” the court said…. During court hearings in February, the former relationship manager said Credit Suisse learned of murders and cocaine smuggling allegedly connected to a Bulgarian gang but continued to manage cash that is now the focus of the trial./The former banker said during the hearings she informed her managers about events, including two murders, associated with the clients, but that they decided to pursue the business nonetheless.
That all sounds very serious, right down to the conviction itself, which University of Basel money-laundering expert Mark Pieth says could be “a watershed moment for Switzerland.” But it’s apparently not actually that serious:
Credit Suisse faces a fine of 2 million Swiss francs ($2.1 million).
Credit Suisse found guilty in money-laundering case [Reuters via CNBC]
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