Nordea Bank, the largest financial group in the Nordic countries, which banned Bitcoin in January, has been caught in a major money laundering scandal for allegedly receiving dirty money from two banks in the Baltics.
Yale, a state-owned publication in Finland with over 3,500 employees, reported that finance authorities in Sweden received a report with evidence to support money laundering allegations against Nordea Bank.
Nordea said, “We are aware of the report, and at Nordea, we work closely with the relevant authorities in the countries in which we operate, including the Nordic Financial Intelligence Units.”
Afroditi Kellberg, a spokeswoman for Nordea Bank AB, said:
“It is widespread practice across the banking industry to restrict the personal account dealing of staff to prevent them taking positions in speculative investments, or which might expose them to a risk of financial loss and therefore impact their financial standing. Nordea therefore, like all banks, has the right to set out policies in this area that apply to its staff.”
Nine months ago, Nordea Bank strictly prohibited its employees from buying and trading cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin due to its unregulated nature.
Doubling down on its decision to impose a blanket ban on crypto, Nordea spokesperson Raymond Frenken stated that it would cooperate with central banks and the European Banking Federation to establish an industry standard regulatory framework in regards to cryptocurrencies.
Frenken said “If banks like Nordea are going to have a very specific policy on this — and we’re hearing regulators are taking a look at this, including the ECB and central banks — probably it will be that it’s changing. With developments like this, it’s more likely that it will have to be discussed in the context of the European Banking Federation.”