Security & Fraud

Deutsche Bank Draws Bipartisan Inquiry Over AML

Deutsche Bank Draws Bipartisan Inquiry Over AML

Congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle are looking for answers about money laundering issues at Deutsche Bank, especially after reports that its U.S. counterpart may have been used for that very purpose, according to a report in Bloomberg.

Republican Representative Patrick McHenry sent a letter on Thursday (Jan. 24) to Deutsche Bank CEO Christian Sewing, looking for documents about internal reviews and what they’ve found in regard to how the bank protects itself from money laundering.

The bank also said it received inquiries from House Democrats in an ongoing probe. The Federal Reserve is also investigating, as is the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).

“It is critically important for the American public to have confidence Deutsche Bank is adequately addressing the vulnerabilities that allowed billions of dollars tied to criminal activities to move through the international banking system,” McHenry said. He gave a Feb. 7 deadline for a response.

The bank has started numerous internal reviews and has brought in outside entities to investigate it. McHenry wants the results of those inquiries provided to the House Financial Services Committee, although the reports aren’t yet available to the public.

“We remain committed to providing appropriate information to all authorized investigations,” the bank told Bloomberg. It said it was working with the Financial Services Committee and the Intelligence Committee on oversight.

Two representatives in particular – Maxine Waters, who heads the financial services panel, and Adam Schiff, who leads the intelligence group – said they will team up to get more information on the bank’s dealings with real estate business tied to President Donald Trump.

“The House Financial Services and Intelligence Committees are engaged in productive discussions with Deutsche Bank, and look forward to continued cooperation,” Waters and Schiff said in a joint statement.

The Fed has sanctioned the bank before – in 2017, it agreed to pay $41 million in response to accusations that its U.S. unit didn’t keep up adequate money laundering protections.



The pressure on banks to modernize their payments capabilities to support initiatives such as ISO 20022 and instant/real time payments has been exacerbated by the emergence of COVID-19 and the compelling need to quickly scale operations due to the rapid growth of contactless payments, and subsequent increase in digitization. Given this new normal, the need for agility and optimization across the payments processing value chain is imperative.