The money laundering scandal in the Russian branch of Deutsche Bank expands.
According to new data, Russian customers conducted illegal bank operations worth 10 billion U.S. dollars, reported Reuters on Tuesday, December 22nd, citing sources familiar with the situation. Previously, the amount was estimated at about $6 billion but the internal investigation into the bank turned up new suspicious transactions.
This September the bank sent the results of the investigation to the authorities involved in this case, including the U.S. Department of Justice and the finance department in New York. Deutsche Bank declined to comment on the new information, noting that the investigation of the "large" deals with shares in Moscow and London has not yet been completed.
The "Russian scandal" could cost the bank a huge amount in fines because the investigation is led by US authorities, said the agency. Now the new focus is whether the bank did in fact violate the sanctions imposed by Western countries against Russia. The possibility that the Bank made deals with persons close to Vladimir Putin, against whom sanctions were imposed, is being investigated.
The new head of Deutsche Bank, John Crane, earlier said that financial institutions set aside a certain amount of money for managing the scandal. However, he does not rule out the possibility that that amount may not be enough. According to financial circles, the bank was prepared to pay fines to the tune of around one billion euros. However, according to a senior employee of Deutsche Bank, the amount of possible fines is difficult to predict and the upper limit in such cases is virtually nonexistent.
In September, Deutsche Bank decided to scale down its business in Russia and to close the Russian division of the investment banking services by the end of 2015.