Swedish bank accused of laundering billions stops customers from buying crypto – to “prevent money laundering”

Swedish bank accused of laundering billions stops customers from buying crypto – to

Image source: Shutterstock / Twitter / Facsimile/Avanza

Christian Ploog

christian.ploog@trijo.co

Totte Löfström

totte.lofstrom@trijo.co

At the same time as Swedbank is accused of extensive and systematic money laundering, they stop their own customers from buying cryptocurrencies. The reason is that the bank wants to "prevent money laundering".

There is a lot of turbulence around Sweden’s largest bank Swedbank right now, to say the least. Since SVT’s “Uppdrag granskning” revealed that the bank may have been used for extensive money laundering – at least $4 billion – for nearly a decade, the share price has collapsed.

Since then, the Swedish Economic Crime Authority has started an investigation against Swedbank regarding unauthorized disclosure of inside information. During Wednesday, however, the suspicions were extended to extensive fraud.

“Information that together gives a picture of Swedbank appearing to have spread misleading information to the public and the market about what the bank knew about suspected money laundering within Swedbank in the Baltic countries, said chief investigator Thomas Langrot in a press release.

CEO gets fired

On Thursday, several of Swedbank’s major owners announced that they will vote no regarding discharge for the CEO Birgitte Bonnesen during the bank’s annual meeting of shareholders today. Shortly afterward, the bank announced that Bonnesen is fired. During the morning, the stock was also placed in a trading halt on the Stockholm Stock Exchange.

At the same time as Swedbank is accused of extensive and systematic money laundering, they stop their own customers from buying cryptocurrencies.

On a direct query on Twitter about why they stopped one person’s deposits at cryptocurrency trading platforms, the bank responds that they “are restrective (sic!) towards cryptocurrency transactions”.

The reason for this, according to the bank, is that they want to “prevent money laundering and terrorism financing”.

“We have no comment on that right now”

When Trijo News reaches Swedbank’s press department, they do not want to comment on their tweet about cryptocurrencies and money laundering.

In the light of the accusations directed at you about money laundering right now, do you have any comment on why a person is not allowed to send money from you to a cryptocurrency exchange?

“No, no, no. No, we have no comment on that right now”, says Anette Ringius, press contact at Swedbank.

The answer (in Swedish) that Swedbank gave on Twitter.

The answer (in Swedish) that Swedbank gave on Twitter: “We are restrective (sic!) towards cryptocurrency transactions, this to prevent money laundering and terrorism financing.” Image source: Twitter

In the past month, Swedbank’s share price has fallen from SEK 211 to SEK 146 – a decline of over 30 percent.

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