It was while analysing information that we noticed something suspicious: an individual in a South Korean Ministry had received a transfer that seemed unusual. Deeper investigation revealed that the same individual received a payment every month from a multinational manufacturing company. After monitoring the liaison closely, we raised five Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) with the Korea Financial Intelligence Unit from 2013 to 2015. These reports helped launch an investigation of alleged corruption, which resulted in the individual being successfully charged in June 2015. Our team lead received two awards from the Financial Services Commission and Korea Financial Intelligence Unit for diligence and tenacity.
While monitoring media coverage, we identified a senior Kenyan public servant who had been suspended during an investigation into corruption related to human trafficking in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi. Screening identified a positive match with a Standard Chartered customer and flags were put on the customer’s accounts. To determine whether there were any indicators of suspicious activity, we enlisted the help of the Financial Crime Intelligence and Investigations unit to compile a timeline of transactions. A pattern of unexplained cash deposits in batches of three or four every month emerged – each coinciding with the customer’s salary payments, but for total amounts several times the customer’s salary. The findings were escalated to the Kenya Financial Crime Risk Committee, with the unanimous decision to exit the customer – and a Suspicious Activity Report was delivered to the authorities.
During the transaction surveillance process, it came to light that a client – a jeweller, based on the Bank’s record – had received frequent SWIFT remittances over a short period. Each of these had been credited to his local currency account, and had been immediately withdrawn as cash. A review of the payment details revealed the funds were received from a hospital abroad as commission payments for liver transplants.
Our analyst followed up. The client stated that he is a doctor using his account for remittances from his patients. Yet he was unable to produce any documentary evidence to back this up – such as a medical degree, agreements with the relevant governments, or patient details.
Our analyst escalated the inconsistencies along with the fact that the client had initially not disclosed his actual profile. He also raised his suspicion that the client was carrying out an illegal activity: receiving remittances as commission against human organ transplants. The Bank’s employee disclosed this to Pakistan’s Financial Monitoring Unit, which leads efforts to fight against Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing. The client’s account was exited from the Bank and our systems updated to restrict his on-boarding in the future.