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FBI investigating Nordic banks over possible anti-money laundering breaches

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The US Justice Department and the FBI are investigating SEB, Swedbank and Danske Bank over possible breaches of anti-money laundering regulations, Swedish newspaper Dagens Industri reported on Tuesday.

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Swedbank, SEB, and Danske were not immediately available for comment on the report, which cited unnamed sources.

The FBI and the US Department of Justice did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Dagens Industri said Sweden had received requests for help from US authorities in investigations into a money laundering scandal that has already resulted in fines for Swedbank, Danske and SEB.

The banks were being investigated by the US Justice Department, the FBI and federal police, as well as a federal prosecutor in New York over possible compliance breaches of anti-money laundering regulations and fraud, the paper said.

The scandal surfaced in 2018 when Danske Bank admitted that suspicious payments totaling 200 billion euros ($243 billion) from Russia and elsewhere flowed through its branch in Estonia.

It spread to Sweden, where Swedbank was fined a record 4 billion Swedish crowns ($477 million) by the country’s Financial Supervisory Authority over flaws in its anti-money-laundering and for withholding information from authorities.

SEB was fined 1 billion crowns for failures in compliance and governance in relation to anti-money laundering controls in the Baltics.

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