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CUNA CUs may find BSA lessons in Justice Dept. agreement
WASHINGTON (1/29/08)—The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) says credit unions should be aware of a recent Justice Department agreement involving a money services business and its handling of Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) Anti -Money Laundering requirements. “Credit unions should take a look at the issues highlighted in the Justice Department agreement,” said Nichole Seabron, CUNA federal compliance counsel, Monday. “ This agreement should be seen as a cautionary tale for any financial institution subject to BSA requirements It shows that regulators are taking a deeper look at areas that would trigger enhanced anti-money laundering procedures.” According to court documents, Justice has accused a California money services business of failing to prevent laundering or investigate suspicious activity for which it had filed reports. Seabron said apparently the California entity engaged in high-risk activities and had an AML system that would identify the high risk activities, but then did nothing to follow up on the activities it identified in Suspicious Activity Reports. According to the Jan. 28 American Banker, until this case the Justice Department has only fined companies for failing to have an effective anti-laundering program. “This case can serve as a reminder to credit unions to make sure their BSA/AML policies and procedures are commensurate with their business risk profiles. “It appears that this entity did not have a strong enough program in place considering the higher risk business transactions it engaged in.” For more details on the Justice Dept. action, use the resource link below.
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