Deutsche Bank Gets Raided After Calling Bitcoin a Risk for Criminal Activity

Roman Schwartz
November 29, 2018

Deutsche shares fell 3% after news of the raid emerged.

A German court ordered the search and targeted at least two employees of the group, according to the prosecutor's office.

Markus Meinzer, director of the Financial Secrecy Tax Justice Network, said the "raid is long overdue because the Panama Papers have amply illustrated how offshore law firms cooperated with banks in setting up structures with one single aim: to help clients hide their true identities".

The activities at Deutsche Bank AG that prompted a police raid on its headquarters took place as recently as this year, according to authorities.

The investigation was launched after evaluation of the explosive Panama Papers tax haven revelations and the previous Offshore Leaks report of offshore bank accounts, she said.

Prosecutors said that, as a result of the leak, they are looking at whether Deutsche Bank assisted clients to set up offshore companies in tax havens so that funds transferred to their bank accounts could skirt anti-money laundering safeguards.

In 2016 alone, more than 900 customers were served by a Deutsche Bank subsidiary registered in the British Virgin Islands, generating a volume of €311m, the prosecutors allege.

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So, some kind of response to that certainly would be in order, and we are discussing what the appropriate response should be. I understand the strategic relationship between us and Saudi Arabia, but I'm not going to blow past this", Graham continued.

German investigators looking for evidence of possible money laundering have searched multiple offices belonging to Deutsche Bank.

The investigation is separate from another money laundering scandal surrounding Danish lender Danske Bank, where Deutsche Bank is involved.

"We confirm that the police are now conducting an investigation at a number of our offices in Germany", the bank said in a short statement posted to its website.

In total around 170 police officers raided six properties belonging to the bank and seized electronic and paper documents.

Last year, Deutsche Bank was fined almost $700million for allowing money laundering through artificial trades between Moscow, London and NY. In Europe, Royal Bank of Scotland is the only lender to have faced a bigger tab, at $US18.1b, the Bloomberg calculations show.

Deutsche Bank was among hundreds of financial institutions whose names cropped up in the media reports about the Panama Papers. "Investors really want to be able to focus on the bank's operating business, so this noise around them is quite unhelpful for the mood". After years of acquisitions and overseas expansion, the lender was left with a patchwork of computer programs to monitor transactions. The bank has publicly said that it agreed it needed to improve its processes to properly identify clients.

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