Warnings about money laundering by Danske Bank in Estonia were ignored

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Russia’s Central Bank sent warnings in 2007 and 2013 to Estonian and Danish financial supervisors over suspect transactions worth billion of dollars at the Estonian branch of Danske Bank but they were largely ignored, a confidential EU document shows.

The EU paper, seen by Reuters and published on Euronews, is the outcome of an investigation by the European Banking Authority (EBA) and details for the first time the extent of supervisory shortcomings in the two countries over the Danske case.

The EBA document cites internal communications between the Russian Central Bank and the Estonian and Danish supervisors in which Moscow warned of money laundering risks and tax evasion linked to payments to clients of the Estonian branch of Danske Bank.

The EBA document showed that regulators did not take sufficient action to address risks after the Russian warnings, in what the EBA said was a breach of EU rules.

EU lawmaker Sven Giegold, who sits on the EU parliament’s committee on financial crime, said in a letter to the EU Commission that the EU executive should start legal proceedings against Denmark and Estonia for their flaws in applying EU laws.

“The case of the Danske Bank is not closed for us, regardless of the decision of EBA,” EU justice commissioner Vera Jourova said in a statement, without elaborating on whether Brussels will open a legal procedure on this case.

Via Reuters / Euronews


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