Clearstream Banking paying $152M in US settlement

WASHINGTON (AP) - Clearstream Banking SA, a division of a German securities exchange, has agreed to pay $152 million to settle U.S. government claims that it allowed Iran to skirt U.S. sanctions by providing the country access to the American banking system.

The Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control announced the settlement Thursday with Clearstream, the Luxembourg-based clearinghouse that is part of Deutsche Borse. Clearstream continued to channel Iranian government holdings of securities from the U.S. to Iran after telling U.S. regulators in late 2007 and early 2008 that it had decided to end business with Iranian clients, OFAC said.

Clearstream also agreed to maintain policies to prevent future violations.

"This is a severe penalty and we have taken actions to address the matter going forward," Clearstream said in a statement. "We have significantly ramped up our compliance efforts."

OFAC noted in its news release that it took Clearstream's "strong remedial response" into consideration in reducing the settlement amount.

OFAC and other regulators have fined several big banks in recent years for allegedly violating U.S. sanctions law in transactions with Iran. OFAC Director Adam Szubin said in a statement that securities firms also need to take care not to violate U.S. sanctions in their use of bank accounts.


(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Top Stories

  • Seahawks Schedule
    The Seahawks have released the 2014 regular-season schedule

  • Save the Buses?
    A group is gathering signatures to save transit, but Michael Medved has another solution

  • 21 and Over
    If 21 is the legal age for alcohol and marijuana, why not cigarettes?
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus
Sign up for breaking news e-mail alerts from MyNorthwest.com
In the community
Do you know a student who stands out in the classroom, school and community?
Help make their dreams come true by nominating them for a $1,000 scholarship and a chance to earn a $10,000 Grand Prize. Brought to you by KIRO Radio and Comprehensive Wealth Management.

Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.