1MDB: Singapore shuts down Swiss Falcon Bank over Malaysian scandal

Singapore’s central bank has shut down a second Swiss bank under investigation for alleged money laundering activities linked to the Malaysian state fund 1MDB.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said it had ordered Falcon Bank to cease its operations in the city-state because of a “persisistent and severe lack of understanding” of Singapore’s money laundering controls.

The MAS announced it had also fined DBS and UBS for similar violations.

“The control lapses observed in DBS and UBS relate to specific bank officers who failed to carry out their duties effectively,” the MAS said, adding that it did not find “pervasive control weaknesses” in these banks.

DBS was ordered to pay Sg$1m (£593,000/US$730,000) for 10 violations while UBS was ordered to pay Sg$1.3m for 13 violations.

The regulator in May kicked out Swiss bank BSI for similar violations – the first time it ordered a bank to shut in 32 years.

Singapore, a regional financial hub, launched a probe into fund flows linked to 1MDB in 2015.

The Malaysian prime minister, Najib Razak, who founded 1MDB, has been heavily embroiled in the scandal but has strongly denied any wrongdoing.

Source : The Gurdian

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