According to research by an international network of journalists, there are considerable deficits in the fight against international money laundering.

According to this, information from a data leak from the US Treasury Department shows that banks from all over the world have been doing business with high-risk customers for years.

Despite strict regulations, they are said to have accepted suspected criminals as customers and made transfers worth billions for them.

Sometimes they reported these events only hesitantly and sometimes with years of delay.

The joint research carried out by several media partners was published under the name FinCEN-Files.

The US online

medium Buzzfeed News

 shared the documents with the journalists network ICIJ (International Consortium of Investigative Journalists).

As a result, 110 media from 88 countries worked on the documents, including in Germany NDR, WDR,

Süddeutsche Zeitung

(SZ)

and

Buzzfeed News

.

According to the media involved, the FinCEN files consist of more than 2,100 suspicious transaction reports from 2000 to 2017. The total amount of transactions is around two trillion US dollars (currently 1.69 trillion euros).

Deutsche Bank defends itself

According to

SZ

, Deutsche Bank is the bank in the leak that has by far the most suspicious transfers.

However, this does not have to mean that Deutsche Bank issues the most reports overall, but could also be due to the composition of the leaked data, which may not be representative.

At the request of the AFP news agency, Deutsche Bank announced that

SZ

and its research partners had reported "on a number of historical topics".

As far as they concern Deutsche Bank, they were already known to the supervisory authorities.

Deutsche Bank and other banks have already reacted.

"Where necessary and appropriate, we have drawn conclusions," it says in the statement.


Germany plays an important role in the international fight against money laundering and terrorist financing.

In July the Federal Ministry of Finance assumed the presidency of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) for two years.

Governments of 37 member states as well as the European Commission and the Gulf Cooperation Council work together in this international institution.