FI was warned about the Russian company – no one acted

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The Swedish Crime Authority initiates a preliminary investigation against Swedbank regarding suspicion of unauthorized disclosure of inside information.

  • We have no comments, says Swedbank’s communications manager Gabriel Francke Rodau.

An investigation is also initiated by the Estonian police, writes DN.

At the same time, SvD reports that Finansinspektionen’s management ignored warnings from their own experts for the Russian company that is now being identified as involved in the money laundering disorder.

Chief Prosecutor Thomas Langrot at the Financial Market Chamber of the Swedish Economic Crime Authority, EBM, has today decided to initiate a preliminary investigation against Swedbank regarding suspicion of unauthorized disclosure of inside information.

The suspicions are mainly based on the information that emerged on the basis of Dagens Nyheter’s article that Swedbank’s major owners would have received prior information about the suspected money laundering scandal that was highlighted by SVT’s Mission Review, UG last week.

“Are there reasons to assume that unauthorized disclosure of inside information has occurred”

  • I have initiated a preliminary investigation on my own initiative, as there is reason to believe that unauthorized disclosure of inside information has been made to the 15 largest owners of Swedbank before the element in SVT. The continued investigation will show what information has been provided, says Thomas Langrot, who at present will not make any further comments.

Estonian police starts their own investigation
During Wednesday evening, DN reports that the police in Estonia have started an investigation into Swedbank. It is included in the preliminary investigation that was previously initiated against Danske Bank.

  • If we see that there are reasons to divide the investigations, Swedbank becomes a separate preliminary investigation. But we don’t know that yet. Today, it is part of the investigation into Danish, says Olja Kivistik at the Estonian Prosecutor’s Office to DN.

According to the newspaper, the investigation has begun in connection with SVT’s “Assignment Review” published its disclosures about Danske Bank.

While the disclosure came in Sweden, the Estonian newspaper Postimees, which cooperates with the SVT program, has made revelations about suspected money laundering linked to Swedbank in Estonia.

FI’s management ignored warning
In SVT’s “Assignment Review”, the Russian coal company Carbo One is pointed out as involved in the money laundering heritage within Swedbank. Svenska Dagbladet now reports that Finansinspektionen’s experts already warned specifically in 2017 that Carbo One could use Swedbank for money laundering.

The experts also generally warned of deficiencies in Swedbank’s and SEB’s safety net against money laundering and terrorist financing.

In a memorandum from 2017 that SvD has read, the investigators write:

“Both banks have neglected their obligations under the Money Laundering Act. FI will then intervene. The investigative group proposes that the district managers decide to take the matters further to the chief legal counsel for sanctioning.

But Finansinspektionen’s management ignored the warning and did not intervene. Only last week, after the assignment review’s first report, did the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority announce that it would initiate a review together with the Estonian Finansinspektionen based on the information that emerged in SVT.

Marc Jacobs

Author: Marc Jacobs

I am a journalist by profession. I have been working as a journalist for 15 years, first as a reporter and eventually as an Editor. I finished Journalism from the University of the Philippines. I have a Master's Degree in Literature from the University of Santo Tomas, where I graduated cum laude. I am currently taking my PhD in Literature also in UST.