30 November 2018

Major raid on German bank linked to Panama papers

Deutsche Bank spirals into trouble as headquarters raided related to a Panama Papers probe, meanwhile shares fall and leaders leave.

Deutsche Bank's Frankfurt offices have been searched as part of a probe linked to the Panama Papers, causing its shares to fall by as much as 3.82% during trading.

Major raid

In total, 170 prosecutors, police officers, and tax inspectors took part in the raid, according to a statement from the prosecutor's office in Frankfurt, Germany. In a statement, the bank said ‘we confirm that the police are currently conducting an investigation at a number of our offices in Germany. The investigation relates to the Panama Papers. We will be issuing further details in due course. We are cooperating fully with the authorities.’ A later statement updating matters, said ‘as far as we are concerned, we have already provided the authorities with all the relevant information regarding Panama Papers. Of course, we will cooperate closely with the public prosecutor's office in Frankfurt, as it is in our interest as well to clarify the facts. In recent years, we have proven that we fully cooperate with the authorities, and we will continue to do so.’

A year of woes

Deutsche Bank is suspected of aiding some 900 customers to set up offshore companies in tax havens, and prosecutors believe some €311 million ($354 million) may have been laundered. Last year, the bank was fined nearly $700 million for allowing money laundering. In April, John Cryan was replaced by Christian Sewing as ceo, followed by Sean Bates, the bank's London-based global head of emerging market debt trading, in May. Americas head Tom Patrick, is reportedly leaving the bank by year-end. In August, the bank uncovered shortcomings in its screening process to fully identify clients and the source of their wealth.