LONDON (Reuters) - HSBC (HSBA.L) has been fined $27.5 million (17.7 million pounds) in Mexico for lax controls in its anti-money laundering systems, a week after being slammed for allowing clients to shift funds from dangerous and secretive countries in a scathing U.S. Senate report.
HSBC said on Wednesday the fine by Mexico’s National Banking and Securities Commission (CNBV) was due to “non-compliance with anti-money laundering systems and controls” and related to late reporting of 1,729 unusual transactions, failing to report 39 unusual transactions, and 21 administrative failures.
A U.S. Senate panel last week alleged HSBC acted as a financier to clients routing funds from the world’s most dangerous places, including Mexico, Iran and Syria, doing regular business in areas tied to drug cartels, terrorist funding and tax cheats.
It said that between 2007 and 2008 HSBC’s Mexican operations moved $7 billion into the bank’s U.S. operations.
“HSBC Mexico apologises for its failure strictly to comply with banking regulations, and acknowledges that in the past it has sometimes failed to meet the standards that regulators and customers expect,” the bank said in a statement.
It said it had taken action to address the failures and said Mexico remained a priority market.
Reporting by Steve Slater; Editing by David Cowell