Naughty naughty HSBC

WASHINGTON – Global banking giant HSBC and its U.S. affiliate exposed the U.S. financial system to a wide array of money laundering, drug trafficking, and terrorist financing risks due to poor anti-money laundering (AML) controls, a Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations probe has found.

Do note that the claim is not that money laundering, drug trafficking and terrorist financing went on.

It is that the bureaucratic system to check that they were not is deemed insufficient.

Still very naughty, of course, for the law is indeed the law. But it is a little different from what the usual suspects will be crowing about.

6 thoughts on “Naughty naughty HSBC”

  1. Erm. Isn’t the claim neither of the above?

    It is certain that HSBC’s controls were weak. That in turn means that we *can’t prove whether or not* it allowed money laundering, drug trafficking and terrorist financing to go on. But the circumstantial evidence (in the form of eight billion dollars in bills from Mexico, $300m from Russian ‘used car dealers’ and so on) suggests that if the records had been maintained, then we would know and some of them would have been stopped.

    Refusing to provide a breath sample carries the same penalty as drink driving; refusing to unlock an encrypted file that the cops have reasonable suspicion of being child porn (and can show beyond reasonable doubt that you have the decrypt details for) carries the same penalty as child porn. This situation is analogous, isn’t it?

  2. …and Lo! the process is the punishment.

    Whether these controls increased / decreased or neither the ability to catch Money Launderers is ignored, the offence is to not follow the process laid down by our elders and betters in the regulatory elite.

    The west is beginning to look more like Rome every day with the regulators as a kind of atheist priesthood.

    Roll on the fucking Dark Ages…

  3. Since there’s been a concept of written law, committing offences has consisted of breaking it, not of doing Things That Are Bad. Only the vilest and most totalitarian regimes have departed from that process.

  4. “Since there’s been a concept of written law, committing offences has consisted of breaking it, not of doing Things That Are Bad. Only the vilest and most totalitarian regimes have departed from that process.”

    I don’t think the Murphmeister would agree.

  5. refusing to unlock an encrypted file that the cops have reasonable suspicion of being child porn (and can show beyond reasonable doubt that you have the decrypt details for) carries the same penalty as child porn

    Err, no, it doesn’t. Our one success with RIPA Part III against the “why won’t you think of the children” tendency (who were overt, there were others in the background) was to limit the sentences. There is a max of 5 years for national security and kiddy cases, with 2 years for all others.

    It’s a max of 10 years for kiddie porn.

  6. I’d forgotten they raised the term to 10 years (it wasn’t part of SOA2003, which incorporates nearly all other recent changes to sexual offences law), ta.

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