Company News

'FinCEN' documents reportedly show banks moved illicit funds -BuzzFeed, ICIJ

Sept 20 (Reuters) - Several global banks moved large sums of allegedly illicit funds during nearly two decades, despite warnings about the organizations they were dealing with, BuzzFeed and other media reported on Sunday, citing documents submitted by banks to the government.

The reports were partly based on documents filed by banks and other financial firms with the U.S. Department of Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCen), obtained here by BuzzFeed News and shared with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and other media organizations.

The ICIJ reported here that the files, which they called the FinCEN files, identify more than $2 trillion of transactions between 1999 and 2017 that were flagged by internal compliance departments of financial institutions as possible money laundering or other criminal activity.

The organizations cited ‘suspicious activity reports’ for the investigation.

FinCen said in a statement on its website on Sept. 1 that it was aware that various media outlets intended to publish a series of articles based on unlawfully disclosed Suspicious Activity Reports, as well as other documents, and said that the “unauthorized disclosure of SARs is a crime that can impact the national security of the United States.”

Representatives for the U.S. Treasury did not immediately respond to an email for comment on Sunday. (Reporting by Megan Davies; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)