Swiss Bank Credit Suisse AG Agrees to Pay $536 Million
Swiss bank Credit Suisse AG has made arrangements to pay a total of $536 million to the Justice Department and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office in order to avoid a charge of criminal activity stating that the company assisted customers in Iran (and other countries) by illegally funneling bank payments through the U.S. Reports recently issued by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia stated that Credit Suisse openly admitted that it had assisted many customers from Iran as well as many banks, skirt U.S. sanctions by concealing all sources of payment and then sending it to other banks. According to the prosecutors, the company had aided customers in Libya as far back as 1986 in avoiding sanctions. The company’s aid to Iranian customers occurred in the 1990’s but proceeded through 2003 after British bank Lloyds made an overall decision to terminate all business with their customers in Iran. But the government stated that the company still had not fully stopped dealings with Iranian customers in December of 2005. The decision to fully terminate all Iranian customers came in October of 2007. Prosecutors settled on an agreement to defer prosecution in the case as long as a $536 million payment was received. Prosecutors agreed upon the award stating that this amount (or more) was involved in the illegal transactions.