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UBS looked into anti-money laundering in hiring CEO Hamers, chairman says

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ZURICH, Dec 9 (Reuters) - UBS's evaluation of former ING boss Ralph Hamers as its next chief executive included a third-party assessment of anti-money laundering issues now being probed in the Netherlands, Chairman Axel Weber told employees on Wednesday.

"I have full confidence in Ralph's ability to lead our firm," Weber told employees in an internal memo on Wednesday, after a Dutch appeals court ordered a criminal probe into Hamers' conduct over the failings.

"UBS conducted an extensive review of Ralph's background as part of its evaluation of CEO candidates, including an evaluation of this matter by independent third parties. We were fully satisfied with the results of these independent evaluations and the assessment of the Dutch prosecutor at the time." (Reporting by Oliver Hirt and Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi; Editing by Edmund Blair)