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German Police Raid Deutsche Bank HQ In Scheme Connected With Panama Papers

Elizabeth Balboa

Deutsche Bank AG (NYSE: DB) was set to open Thursday down 4.5 percent after German prosecutors raided its Frankfurt headquarters in a money-laundering investigation.

What Happened

The 2016 Panama Papers prompted prosecutors to investigate Deutsche Bank’s role in helping clients create offshore tax havens for criminally acquired funds.

They now allege more than 900 Deutsche customers funneled €311 million through a subsidiary in the British Virgin Islands in 2016, and they accuse two staff members of processing suspicious transactions, according to reports.

Deutsche Bank’s main office and other sites throughout the capital were searched in an operation engaging about 170 police officers and officials.

Why It’s Important

This isn’t Deutsche Bank’s first high-profile scandal. Earlier this month, management confirmed the bank had previously processed payments for Denmark’s Danske Bank in Estonia, many of whose €200 billion volume has been deemed suspicious.

In September, Deutsche Bank was sanctioned domestically for enabling money laundering and terrorist financing. German regulators ordered an independent auditor to monitor all the bank’s activities for the next three years.

Last year, U.S. and UK regulators fined the bank $630 million for facilitating the illegal transfer of $10 billion out of Russia through its New York, London and Moscow operations.

What’s Next

Management said it's fully cooperating with authorities and will release details as they become available.

At time of publication, Deutsche Bank shares were trading down 3.1 percent to $9.58 in the pre-market session.

Related Links:

Everyone Involved In The Panama Papers Scandal In 1 Interactive Map

The Companies That Manipulated The Tax System, According To The Paradise Papers

Why Bermuda Could Be The Next Switzerland

Photo credit: Markus Bernet, Wikimedia Commons

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