$700m penalty for Australia’s biggest bank
THE Commonwealth Bank of Australia has agreed to pay a Australian $700m (£400m) fine for failing to comply with measures to prevent money laundering and terrorism financing.
Australia’s largest bank said it had negotiated the fine with the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre, the government’s financial intelligence agency better known as Austrac, to resolve a civil Federal Court case that began in August.
The agreement is subject to court approval.
The bank admitted that it was late in reporting more than 53,500 suspicious transactions exceeding $10,000 (£5,686) between 2012 and 2015. Each offence was pun- ishable by a fine of up to $21m (£11m).
The bank blamed a single software error in its deposit-taking cash machines. It argued those violations should be treated as one rather than as a series of individual offences.
The suspicious transactions were conducted by people connected to the international drug trade.