Agreement settles allegations banking giant violated US sanctions on money transfers to Iran

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Lloyds agrees to settlement on financial sanctions

WASHINGTON — The Treasury Department says Lloyds TSB Bank PLC has agreed to a $217 million settlement stemming from claims the bank manipulated money transfers to allow customers to skirt U.S. financial sanctions against Iran and other countries.

The department said in a statement Tuesday the alleged violations stemmed from the mid-1990s when Lloyds, with the knowledge of its Iranian bank customers, altered or deleted information in wire transfer instructions.

Lloyds routed at least 4,281 wire transfers worth nearly $37 million through third-party banks in the U.S. between June 2003 and August 2006. The department said that was in violation of regulations related to Iran, Sudan, and Libya.

Earlier this year, the British bank agreed to forfeit $350 million to the Justice Department and the New York County district attorney’s office for the same pattern of conduct, the Treasury statement said. As a result, the settlement with Treasury does not require any further payment from Lloyds, according to the department.

In an e-mailed statement, Lloyd spokeswoman Sara Evans said the bank is “committed to running our business with the highest levels of integrity and regulatory compliance across all of our operations.”

As part of the settlement with OFAC, Lloyds will conduct annual reviews for the next two years of the bank’s policies and procedures, according to the Treasury Department. The United Kingdom’s Financial Services Authority will be involved in developing the scope of and approving an independent third party to oversee the review.


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