The public prosecution department is coming under considerable pressure to prosecute ABN Amro staff over money laundering failings, rather than reach an out of court settlement, the Financieele Dagblad said on Friday.
Pressure is coming from both politicians and society at large, and is forcing department officials to take difficult decisions, the paper said. In particular, the FD said, personal responsibility is hard to prove and the department is rarely successful in this sort of case, making a settlement more appealing.
The record €775m out of court settlement reached with ING for similar failings was widely criticised because bankers were perceived to have been let off. There was similar criticism after the Rabobank Libor interest rate scandal.
The public prosecution department said last September it had launched a criminal investigation into possible money laundering at ABN Amro.
‘If there is a settlement involving a few hundred million euros and no individual bankers face charges, the department will have some explaining to do do parliament,’ Labour MP Henk Nijboer told the paper.
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