STOCKHOLM, March 17 Swedish lenders Nordea
and Handelsbanken will face no further
sanctions for their involvement in the Panama Papers scandal as
they had already been fined and acted to remedy the
shortcomings, the country’s financial watchdog said on Friday.
The financial watchdog opened investigations into all four
major Swedish banks after they appeared in a leak of more than
11.5 million documents last year from the files of law firm
Mossack Fonseca, based in Panama.
While the probe of Handelsbanken and Nordea has now been
wrapped up, investigations into Swedbank and SEB
are continuing, the FSA said.
“In the investigation we have made as a result of the Panama
Papers, we have determined that it is the same deficiencies that
they (Nordea and Handelsbanken) have already received a penalty
for,” Victoria Ericsson, spokesperson at the Swedish Financial
Supervisory Authority, told Reuters.
She said both banks had launched comprehensive action plans
in connection with the sanctions last year.
“We believe the shortcomings we have seen in the Panama
investigation will be taken care of when the banks’ action plans
are completed,” she said.
Nordea and Handelsbanken were fined 50 million Swedish
crowns ($5.7 million) and 35 million crowns respectively in 2015
for breaching money laundering rules.
The FSA said at the time that the severity of the compliance
breaches would have justified revoking Nordea’s banking licence.
However, because the bank had taken steps to address the
problems, it opted to issue a warning alongside the fine, which
was the maximum amount at the time.
($1 = 8.7977 Swedish crowns)
(Reporting by Johan Ahlander and Anna Ringstrom; editing by
Niklas Pollard/Keith Weir)