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First Abu Dhabi Bank USA pays BSA/AML penalty

Washington, DC
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The OCC has issued a consent order including the assessment of a $5 million civil money penalty to First Abu Dhabi Bank, USA, N.V. (Washington, DC), a federal branch of First Abu Dhabi Bank USA, N.V. (Willemstad, Curaçao), for the branch;s violations of 12 CFR § 21.21, 12 CFR § 21.11 and 31 CFR § 1010.610.

The OCC found that during the period of 2016 to 2019, the branch failed to adopt and implement a compliance program that adequately covered the required BSA/AML program elements, and the Branch failed to timely file Suspicious Activity Reports (“SARs”) related to suspicious customer activity. According to the Order:

  • The Branch had an inadequate system of internal controls, ineffective independent testing, a weak BSA Officer function, and insufficient staffing and training.
  • The Branch had systemic deficiencies in its transaction monitoring systems and alert management processes, which resulted in monitoring gaps. These systemic deficiencies resulted in alert and investigation backlogs, and led to a failure to file SARs in a timely manner.
  • The Branch had systemic deficiencies in its customer due diligence, enhanced due diligence, and customer risk rating processes.
  • The Branch failed to file the necessary SARs concerning suspicious customer activity in a timely manner, in violation of 12 C.F.R. § 21.11.
  • The Branch failed to adopt and implement adequate due diligence programs for foreign correspondent accounts, in violation of 31 C.F.R. § 1010.610.

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