By Christopher M. Matthews
Deutsche Bank AG agreed on Wednesday to pay $258 million to New York and U.S. banking regulators for violating U.S. sanctions by handling restricted transactions involving Iran, Libya, Syria and other countries.
New York's top financial regulator said Wednesday it would levy a $200 million penalty on the German lender and require it to fire six employees allegedly involved in the transactions. Deutsche Bank also agreed to pay $58 million to the U.S. Federal Reserve to resolve similar allegations.
The New York regulator, the Department of Financial Services, said bank employees used "nontransparent methods and practices" to process more than $10.8 billion for financial institutions and others in Iran, Libya, Syria, Myanmar and Sudan that were subject to U.S. economic sanctions. The misconduct occurred between 1999 and 2006, the regulator said.
"We are pleased to have reached a resolution with the New York Department of Financial Services and the Federal Reserve," a Deutsche Bank spokeswoman said. "The conduct ceased several years ago, and since then we have terminated all business with parties from the countries involved."
A related criminal investigation into the conduct by New York federal prosecutors and the Manhattan district attorney's office is continuing, according to a person familiar with matter.
Wednesday's settlement is the latest to stem from a long-running crackdown by U.S. authorities on European-headquartered banks that allegedly did deals with countries under U.S. sanctions.
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