USA seeks dismissal of deferred criminal charges against HSBC

HSBC share price Group no longer faces prosecution threat in US

"We've seen these deferred prosecution agreements can be extended, as we saw with Standard Chartered".

HSBC is no longer under threat of prosecution in the United States over allegations of money laundering in Mexico.

A consumer advocacy organization lamented the "travesty of justice" on Monday after HSBC said that it no longer had to worry about the possibility of criminal charges for laundering hundreds of millions of dollars in drug cartel money and violating other federal laws since the bank's deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) with the Department of Justice expired.

HSBC said in 2012 it would take action to tighten and improve its policies against being used for money laundering. Money laundering is disguising proceeds from crimes so the money can not be linked back to any wrongdoing. Had the allegations turned out to be true, under signed DPA US would stop any transaction with the bank. This arrangement will continue for some more period, the bank informed.

Following its signing of the DPA in 2012, HSBC embarked on a worldwide programme of upgrading its compliance systems to U.S. standards, raising its spending to more than US$1 billion a year.

The 2012 settlement was related to the alleged laundering of around $881m for Mexican drug lords as well as completing transactions for countries subject to U.S. sanctions, including Iran.

As part of the agreements with the USA prosecutors and Britain's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), HSBC also installed an independent monitor charged with producing annual reports on the progress of its reforms on fighting financial crime.

The monitor has also been serving since July 2013 as HSBC's Skilled Person.

HSBC in a prepared statement said it live up to everyone one of its commitments, and was going to file with the court system in the US seeking complete dismissal of every charge.

"We are committed to doing our part to protect the integrity of the global financial system, and further improvements to our own capability and contributions toward the partnerships we have established with governments in this area will remain a top priority for the bank into 2018 and beyond", he added.

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