Bank of China Order Confirms U.S. Regulators Are Willing to Take a Tough Line On Sanctions Missteps

August 16, 2018
By: Anna Sayre, Legal Content Writer, SanctionsAlert.com

After conducting a supervisory examination of its compliance program, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has issued a $12.5 million fine and a Consent Order requiring Bank of China’s New York Branch to fulfill certain requirements within 90 days, some very far-reaching.

The Order, imposed by the OCC in April 2018, not only details shortcomings found in the Bank Secrecy Act/anti-money laundering (BSA/AML) compliance program of one of the world’s biggest lenders, but also enterprise-wide deficiencies in its Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) compliance requirements.

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Seven Reasons Why Compliance Suites Should Treat Sanctions As Distinct from AML

July 7, 2018
By: SanctionsAlert.com

In recent times, the implementation of economic sanctions has been the go-to method for governments to put pressure on those countries that do not adhere to international standards. The implementation of economic sanctions as a leveraging tool has grown exponentially in the last decade and, as a result, given rise to a myriad of new rules and regulations that compliance suites must follow or suffer the consequences.

Nevertheless, despite this influx of new sanctions-based requirements, many compliance suites still continue to embedsanctions into their overall Anti-Money Laundering (AML)programs.

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‘Sanctions Busting’: The Risks and Rewards to those Trying to Circumvent the System

June 15, 2018
By: Keith Preble and Dr. Bryan R. Early*

The main goal of imposing sanctions on a target country or entity has always been to disrupt the target’s commercial relationships and make it costlier for them to do business. Governments try to achieve this goal by imposing administrative and criminal penalties for individuals and entities that violate their sanctions.

Though these restrictions generally apply only to firms and citizens operating in the country imposing the sanctions, the United States has recently employed far more aggressive and wide-reaching methods in penalizing foreign firms.

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Wolfsberg’s New Correspondent Banking Questionnaire Incorporates Specific Guidance to Aid in Sanctions Compliance

April 11, 2018
By: Anna Sayre, Legal Content Writer SanctionsAlert.com

In direct response to increased regulatory expectations for enhanced due diligence in correspondent banking relationships, the Wolfsberg Group (Wolfsberg), published its new Correspondent Banking Due Diligence Questionnaire (CBDDQ) in February 2018, incorporating a number of important changes. The new Questionnaireis not only four times as long as its 2014 predecessor, containing 110 instead of 28 questions, but has also expanded its scope to specifically address due diligence issues relating to Anti-Bribery and Corruption, Counter terrorism Financing,and Sanctions exposure controls. (more…)

Deciphering Multi-Faceted Venezuelan Sanctions –Top Ten Practical Tips to Stay Compliant

January 24, 2018
By: Anna Sayre, Legal Content Writer, SanctionsAlert.com

The recently imposed Venezuelan sanctions issued by the U.S., the E.U., and Canada have placed heavy burdens on sanctions compliance programs. This has made it much more difficult for companies and financial institutions who engage in business with the troubled South American nation to stay compliant.

Not only are these new sanctions on Venezuela detailed, multilateral, multi-faceted, and yet to be properly defined, but designated entities (or those businesses connected to them) are not always easily identifiable.

Many compliance suites are having trouble navigating these muddy waters.

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