Danske Bank's money laundering 'giga scandal' spreads to Britain

Danske Bank sign is seen at the bank's branch in Tallinn Estonia. Ints Kalnins  Reuters

Danske Bank sign is seen at the bank's branch in Tallinn Estonia. Ints Kalnins Reuters

Danske Bank holds a third of Danish people's savings and faith in the country's financial system is being lost due to the scandal.

In a sign of the growing pressure on Danske Bank, which already faces criminal inquiries in Denmark and Estonia, the chief executive of CARE Danmark said on Twitter that the Danish charity had made a decision to end its relationship with lender.

According to Danske's own findings regarding its money-laundering scandal, which were published earlier this week, United Kingdom entities overtook Russian customers at the Estonian branch in 2013, peaking at 1,100.

The chief executive of Denmark's largest bank resigned Wednesday after an internal report into allegations of massive money laundering via an Estonian subsidiary showed that "the vast majority" of transactions were deemed to be "suspicious".

She will also discuss the case with the European Banking Authority. An independent investigation published on Wednesday found that 15,000 customers were involved in suspicious transactions. "When new information emerges, we have to look at it and assess if there is need to take action".

"The fact that Denmark has been at the centre of money laundering of this size is frankly quite terrible", Rasmussen told reporters outside a meeting of European Union leaders in Salzburg. "But now the work we have in this matter intensifies".

Denmark's central bank said on Friday that it supported a proposal for tougher laws on money laundering agreed by politicians on Wednesday.

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Protestors outside Danske Bank's head office in Copenhagen on Thursday.

Denmark's business minister, Rasmus Jarlov, said he expected that Danish authorities could fine Danske 4bn Danish kroner (£475m). The bank on Wednesday said it would donate 1.5bn kroner to a charity focused on "combating worldwide financial crime". "But that just makes it even more important that we handle things thoroughly in Denmark, to make sure nobody elsewhere is left with the impression that we're not coming down severely on this".

Jeppe Kofod, a Danish member of the European parliament and a member of the parliament's special committee on financial crimes, tax evasion and tax avoidance., said U.S. authorities were examining the case and he expected a full investigation.

"We are following and analyzing the situation closely".

"Danske Bank has been involved in money laundering which is deeply reprehensible and outrageous but Nordea has been involved in tax havens, so the entire bank sector needs to clean up for us to have a trusting collaboration with the banks", Thomas Kastrup-Larsen said.

Borgen, 54, was in charge of Danske Bank's global operations including Estonia between 2009 and 2012.

Danske's shares fell another 8%, taking the total losses for the year to 32%. However, the bank's investigation has revised this number.

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