US Fed orders Chinese bank to tighten laundering controls

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Washington (AFP)

The US Federal Reserve said Thursday that it had ordered the Agricultural Bank of China, one of China's largest banks, to strengthen its internal controls against money laundering.

The move came after a former staffer sued the bank last year, saying said she had been mistreated and forced her from her job after she had informed the Fed that the bank was possibly in violation of rules on policing money laundering.

The staffer, Natasha Taft, settled her complaint with the bank in earlier this month without any public finding of guilt.

But the Fed followed that up Thursday with an agreement that the bank will overhaul its internal controls to ensure that transactions

The bank and the Fed entered the agreement "solely for the purpose of settling this matter without a formal proceeding being filed and without the necessity for protracted or extended hearings or testimony," according to the agreement.

The agreement gave the bank 60 days to complete a review and tell the Fed how it would improve oversight and monitoring of transactions to prevent money laundering.