Chinese banks face US action in N. Korean sanctions probe, Latest Business News - The New Paper

Chinese banks face US action in N. Korean sanctions probe

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BEIJING : A US judge has found three large Chinese banks in contempt for refusing to comply with subpoenas in a probe into North Korean sanctions violations, the Washington Post reported, adding one of them could lose access to the US financial system.

The banks were not identified by the judge, but details in the ruling align with a 2017 civil forfeiture action against Bank of Communications, China Merchants Bank and Shanghai Pudong Development Bank, the newspaper reported.

The US Justice Department at the time accused the banks of working with a Hong Kong company, which allegedly laundered more than US$100 million (S$135 million) for North Korea's sanctioned Foreign Trade Bank, the paper said.

The newspaper said the bank at risk of losing access to US dollars appeared to be Shanghai Pudong Development Bank.

But the bank said it will strictly abide by the relevant laws and regulations.

China Merchants Bank said it complies with related UN resolutions and Chinese laws and is not involved in any investigations related to possible violations of sanctions.

Bank of Communications, China's fifth largest bank, said the case involved US courts seeking to obtain customer information stored outside the US from Chinese commercial banks. - REUTERS