American senator Elizabeth Warren has launched a scathing attack on US bank regulators for allowing British bank HSBC to continue doing business in the U.S. despite confessing to what one regulator called "egregious" money laundering violations.
American senator Elizabeth Warren has launched a scathing attack on US bank regulators for allowing British bank HSBC to continue doing business in the U.S. despite confessing to what one regulator called “egregious” money laundering violations.
During a Senate Banking Committee hearing about money laundering, Warren said:
“They did it over and over and over again across a period of years. And they were caught doing it, warned not to do it and kept right on doing it, and evidently making profits doing it,” Warren said of HSBC. “How many billions of dollars do you have to launder for drug lords and how many economic sanctions do you have to violate before someone will consider shutting down a financial institution like this?”
The attorney general of the United States confessed this week that some banks are so big and important that they are essentially above the law.
Senator Warren described this as “fundamentally wrong”.
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“If you’re caught with an ounce of cocaine, the chances are good you’re gonna go to jail. If it happens repeatedly, you may go to jail for the rest of your life. But evidently if you launder nearly a billion dollars for drug cartels and violate our international sanctions, your company pays a fine and you go home and sleep in your bed at night – every single individual associated with this. And I think that’s fundamentally wrong.”