ECB cancels license of Malta bank
The European Central Bank has withdrawn the banking license of Malta’s Pilatus Bank. The decision follows the US charging the chairman of the bank under money laundering and bank fraud regulations. The bank had been accused of processing corrupt payments for senior Azeri and Maltese figures. The ECB’s governing council has decided to withdraw the authorization of Pilatus Bank, a statement issued by Malta Financial Services Authority said. The Maltese regulator had recommended revoking the bank’s license in June. The EU began investigating the Pilatus case after journalist Caruana Galizia’s murder in October 2017. Maltese authorities took no action until the Iranian chairman of the bank, Ali Sadr Hashemi Nejad, was arrested in the United States in March on charges of money laundering and sanctions violations.