Deutsche Bank Headquarters Raided Over Possible Money Laundering Scheme
Tax investigators and 170 police officers stormed Deutsche Bank’s head office in Frankfurt, Germany Thursday to investigate a possible money laundering scam linked to the Panama Papers.
Authorities raided six Deutsche bank branches, including the headquarters, Thursday and apprehended two bank employees in connection to a money laundering investigation linked to the Panama Papers, according to Business Insider.
The Panama Papers are a collection of 11.5 million leaked documents on offshore tax structures from Panama-based law firm, Mossack Fonseca. German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung leaked the encrypted confidential documents on April 3, 2016, after an investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.
A dozen current and former world leaders as well as 128 other public officials and politicians were named in the papers. Wealthy celebrities and businessmen were also exposed in the documents.
Prosecutors allege that the bank helped roughly 900 clients set up offshore companies in tax havens, laundering an estimated $354 million, according to Business Insider.
“We confirm that the police are currently conducting an investigation at a number of our offices in Germany,” the bank said in a Thursday statement, Business Insider reported. “The investigation relates to the Panama Papers. We will be issuing further details in due course. We are cooperating fully with the authorities.”
Clinton donor Farhad Azima was exposed during the Panama Papers scandal, when investigation uncovered that he had worked with the law firm Mossack Fonseca. (RELATED: More Clinton Connections Emerge In Panama Papers)
“As far as we are concerned, we have already provided the authorities with all the relevant information regarding [the] Panama Papers,” the bank said in a statement, CNN reported Thursday. “Of course, we will cooperate closely with the public prosecutor’s office in Frankfurt, as it is in our interest as well to clarify the facts.”
Bank shares dropped more than three percent Thursday, according to CNN.
Deutsche Bank has faced other investigations in November. Criminal investigators requested information from the bank in mid-November regarding its transactions with Danske Bank’s Estonia branch over suspicious transactions between 2007 and 2015, according to Reuters.
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