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In May, Riggs Bank of Washington DC, the US capital’s oldest locally-based financial institution, agreed to pay a $25m (£13.7m) civil money penalty for violating the Bank Secrecy Act. This is the largest fine assessed to date for violating that Act, which requires banks to adopt a comprehensive anti-money laundering (AML) compliance programme. The alleged violations identified at 168-year-old Riggs Bank included numerous transactions involving accounts related to the Embassy of Saudi Arabia and the Government of Equatorial Guinea. Riggs had previously been cited in 2002 for violations involving transactions for former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet.

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