Senator Warren Submits Questions for the Record Regarding Deutsche Bank Suspicious Activity Reports
Washington, DC - United States Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) submitted questions for the record to federal regulators and law enforcement officials following their testimony at today's Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee hearing, "Combatting Illicit Financing By Anonymous Shell Companies Through the Collection of Beneficial Ownership Information." Senator Warren posed a series of questions to determine whether the regulators believe Deutsche Bank violated federal laws or regulations related to illicit financial activities, or previous settlements between the bank and the federal government, in failing to file reports of suspicious activities by entities linked to President Trump and his family.
According to a May 19, 2019, New York Times report, front-line Deutsche Bank employees recommended that the bank file suspicious activity reports following a series of transactions by entities linked to President Trump and by a real estate company then-owned by White House Senior Advisor Jared Kushner. However, their judgment was overturned by higher-level bank managers. According to employees, the bank's approach to entities linked with Trump and Kushner were "part of a pattern of the bank's executives rejecting valid reports to protect relationships with lucrative clients."
Senator Warren has asked today's witnesses to respond to the following questions:
Questions for Ms. Grovetta Gardineer, Senior Deputy Comptroller for Bank Supervision Policy, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), U.S. Department of the Treasury
- If a bank were to decline to file an otherwise warranted suspicious activity report in order to maintain its relationship with a lucrative client, would that be consistent with the Bank Secrecy Act and other relevant rules and regulations?
- According to the report, "dozens of politically exposed clients of the private-banking division, including Mr. Trump and members of his family were not" receiving the scrutiny at Deutsche Bank typically applied to people in politically important and sensitive positions. If Deutsche Bank declined to file otherwise warranted suspicious activity reports to avoid "provok(ing) the president's wrath," would that be consistent with the Bank Secrecy Act and other relevant rules and regulations?
- Deutsche Bank is currently operating under a consent order with the Federal Reserve that "requires it to do more to stop illicit activities." Does the OCC share information with the Federal Reserve with respect to compliance with this order? What is the OCC's position about whether Deutsche Bank is in compliance with that order?
- Has any political appointee in the Trump Administration discussed or received any non-public information about an OCC examination or enforcement action related to Deutsche Bank?
Question for Mr. Kenneth A. Blanco, Director, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), U.S. Department of the Treasury
- Has any political appointee in the Trump Administration discussed or received any non-public information, held by FinCEN, including a suspicious activity report, about Deutsche Bank, or transactions associated with President Trump, Mr. Kushner, any members or their families or any organizations with which they're associated?
Questions for Mr. Steven D'Antuono, Section Chief, Financial Crimes Section, Federal Bureau of Investigation
- How many politically exposed individuals have been convicted of crimes using evidence gleaned from suspicious activity reports?
- Has any political appointee in the Trump administration discussed or received any non-public information obtained by the FBI, about Deutsche Bank, or financial transactions associated with President Trump, Mr. Kushner, any members or their families or any organizations with which they're associated?
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