Bank closes Jersey branch after £475,000 fine

THE Jersey branch of a global bank is closing down its business and leaving the Island after being fined £475,000 for breaching the Proceeds of Crime (Jersey) Law.

The case of Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC was heard in the Royal Court (28176045)
The case of Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC was heard in the Royal Court (28176045)

In February, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC Jersey Branch admitted failing to comply with counter-terror and anti-money-laundering regulations relating to two customers who withdrew huge sums of cash at a branch in the United Arab Emirates.

It was fined £475,000 and ordered to pay costs of £25,000, after the Royal Court heard the case related to $1.2m dollars being withdrawn between 2013 and 2018.

Now a full judgment from the Royal Court has been released, saying the bank is closing down its businesses in Jersey.

The company admitted the breaches and, in the judgment, the court said that if the regulations were not followed it would impact on the Island’s reputation as a finance centre.

‘The importance of having effective consistent policies and procedures to combat money-laundering cannot be overstated,' the judgment said.

‘It should be obvious that if a financial institution does not have those procedures, the fact that it is not as a direct result assisting the laundering of money is a matter more of luck than judgment.

‘The absence of such effective procedures means that money can, and inevitably at some point will, be laundered through the financial system.'

It added: ‘That will be injurious to this Island’s reputation as a finance centre with proper and effective standards of financial conduct and probity and would injuriously affect the finance industry, and hence the Island as a whole.’

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