WRAPUP 4-Singapore shuts Falcon bank unit, fines DBS and UBS over 1MDB
(Adds Swiss regulator probing UBS)
By Anshuman Daga and Joshua Franklin
SINGAPORE/ZURICH Oct 11 (Reuters) - Singapore's central bank on Tuesday shut down a second Swiss bank in the city-state and fined banks DBS and UBS in its biggest crackdown on alleged money-laundering activities connected with Malaysia's scandal-tainted 1MDB fund.
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said in a statement it had ordered Zurich-based Falcon Private Bank's Singapore branch to cease operating because of "a persistent and severe lack of understanding" of Singapore's money-laundering controls. It also accused Falcon's senior management in Switzerland and Singapore of "improper conduct".
Falcon was fined S$4.3 million ($3.12 million) for 14 breaches of the money laundering prevention law, including not filing suspicious transaction reports and failure to inform authorities of irregular activities in their customers' accounts.
Falcon is the second bank to lose its licence in connection with Singapore's probe into 1MDB, in which authorities have frozen millions of dollars in bank accounts, fined banks and charged several private bankers.
In May, Swiss-based BSI Bank's Singapore branch was ordered to be closed for failing to control money-laundering activities connected with 1MDB. That was the first time in 32 years Singapore had shut down a bank.
DBS was fined S$1 million ($728,067) and UBS S$1.3 million on Tuesday for breaches in Singapore's anti-money laundering law. The two banks said in separate statements they would take action against staff responsible for the lapses.