Wachovia Bank, N.A. has agreed to pay $160 million to the federal government to resolve a charge that the bank willfully failed to effectively monitor for potential money-laundering activity in hundreds of billions of dollars in transactions with Mexican currency exchange houses, the Justice Department announced Wednesday.

Federal prosecutors in Florida unsealed a criminal information against Wachovia, a subsidiary of Wells Fargo & Co., that charged Wachovia with willfully failing to maintain an anti-money-laundering program from May 2003 through June 2008. Wachovia must pay a fine of $160 million within five days, according to a deferred prosecution agreement.

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