UBS, Credit Suisse and US bankers under scrutiny for possible breaches of Russian sanctions

Swiss banks UBS and Credit Suisse are among banks under investigation by the US justice department in a probe into whether bankers helped Russian oligarchs evade sanctions, Bloomberg reports, citing unnamed sources.

Subpoenas were sent to individual bankers before the crisis that led to UBS’s deal to take over Credit Suisse, according to the news agency.

Subpeonas for US bankers

The investigation is focused on whether banks violated sanctions by doing business with individuals or entities already sanctioned by the US.

The justice department has also reportedly sent subpoenas to staff at several large US institutions.

Severe penalties

The penalties for breaches by financial institutions of US sanctions can be severe. In 2014, France’s largest bank, BNP Paribas, agreed to a record US$8.9 billion settlement with US prosecutors over allegations of sanctions violations.

France’s largest bank admitted two criminal charges of breaking US sanctions against trade with Sudan, Iran and Cuba. The settlement was the largest for such a case in US history.

The Bloomberg article, Credit Suisse, UBS Among Banks in DOJ Russia-Sanctions Probe can be found here.


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