UK Parliament launches formal investigation

British lawmakers are launching an official inquiry into the “deeply troubling” questions it raised FinCEN Files, A global money laundering investigation based on documents shared with BuzzFeed News with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.

Investigation revealed How Western bank giants are moving trillions of dollars into suspicious transactions, enriching themselves and their shareholders while facilitating the actions of terrorists, corrupt, and drug lords.

The documents included numerous disclosures about the British financial system and some of its largest banks, including HSBCAnd Standard Chartered, And Barclays. Often money launderers Using British shell companies to transfer their money Thanks to the country’s lax company formation laws. The UK’s problems are so widespread that a classified US government report described the country as “Higher risk“The jurisdiction for money laundering.

Parliament’s Treasury Committee announced the investigation just after midnight local time Friday.

Mel Stride, the conservative committee chair, said the investigation would look into the progress government regulators and law enforcement have made in preventing money laundering.

“It is important that the relevant bodies are effectively accountable and scrutinized to ensure that the UK is a clean place to do business,” he wrote in a statement. British parliamentary inquiries typically collect evidence through written and oral testimony, much of which is published, before issuing a final report.

When the investigation of the FinCEN files first surfaced in September, Stride declared that his findings were “extremely worrying” and Submit a series of questions On this topic to key government agencies. Stride released the official agencies’ responses to those letters on Thursday.

The Financial Conduct Authority, which oversees banks operating in the United Kingdom, said it has written to all the banks mentioned in the FinCEN files to request more information, and said that if any “suspected serious misconduct” occurs, it will open its own investigations.

James Brockenshire, the government secretary of state for security, wrote in response to Stride that the Home office The National Center for Economic Crime is “carefully studying the allegations” in the FinCEN files “to find out what needs to be done more.”

The investigation into the FinCEN files was based on thousands of “suspicious activity reports” that banks have sent to the Financial Crime Enforcement Network, a US government agency tasked with preventing money laundering.

In response to questions about whether the FinCEN files resulted in banks filing fewer search and rescue reports, Brokenshire said law enforcement authorities had “raised no concerns” about filing suspicious activity reports. In the week following publication, “SAR reports continued to be submitted at or above normal rates”.

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