Former NYC Mayoral Candidate: French Bank's Fine Sufficient

Monday, 14 Jul 2014 04:57 PM

By Courtney Coren

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The Justice Department has fined French bank BNP Paribas for completing transactions made with sanctioned countries, which is forbidden for banks who do business in the United States, and former New York City mayoral candidate Ceceilia Berkowitz says that will be enough to punish banks.

Banks are obligated "to obey the law of the countries you're in," Berkowitz told host Ed Berliner on "MidPoint" on Newsmax TV on Monday.

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Berkowitz says BNP Paribas should be held accountable for violating the U.S. sanctions by completing transactions for individuals in Iran, Sudan, and Cuba.

BNP Paribas reached an $8.97 billion settlement agreement with the Justice Department's criminal division on July 2 in a Manhattan federal court for conspiring to violate the International Economic Powers Act and the Trading with the Enemy Act.

More than $190 billion in transactions by individuals in the three sanctioned countries were completed by BNP Paribas from 2002 through 2012, and the bank allegedly tried to hide the names of those they were performing the transactions for.

"Are those fines enough to penalize the banks?" Berkowitz asked on "MidPoint."

"I think yes, it is."

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