Posted Friday January 22, 2016

Iran sanctions lifted, Dutch nationals arrested in Bitcoin raid, compliance fears over weakened encryption, and more

So much to read, no time to search. Everything you need to know in our compliance roundup. 

  • International trade sanctions on Iran were lifted at the end of last week. While European firms are expected to be quicker than their American rivals to enter the market, the FT reports that larger banks are expected to stay out for some time. OFAC released a large volume of designation updates over the weekend.

  • Ten Dutch nationals were arrested this week on suspicion of using Bitcoin to launder €20m in proceeds from online drug dealing. The investigation required coordination between law enforcement agencies from the United States, Australia, Lithuania and Morocco.

  • Panthongtae ‘Oak’ Shinawatra, son of the former Thai Prime Minister, has been summoned for questioning by Thailand’s Department of Special Investigation over alleged involvement in a 9.9bn Baht money laundering operation involving loans issued by Krungthai Bank.

  • Demands by security agencies that firms deploy weaker encryption standards will be a serious concern for corporate compliance, according to tech commentators. Tony Bradley, Editor in Chief at, argues that introducing backdoors will leave firms open to challenges over financial data protection.

And finally, delegates at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos debated the future of finance (video) in an exchange that saw a wide difference of opinion over banking regulation. Jeroen Dijsselbloem, the Dutch Finance Minister, argued that slow economic recovery in Europe was attributable to the after-effects of the financial crisis caused by years of lax regulation. Stephen Schwarzman, CEO of Blackstone, disagreed, claiming that banking regulations had made the world ‘more dangerous’ and were stifling growth. Anshu Jain, a Deutsche Bank executive, had earlier stated that the bulk of the reforms introduced by regulators since 2008 were necessary, and that his bank would have introduced many of the same requirements independently.

Arachnys update

Source of the week: the Colombian Judiciary's case search portal allows users to retrieve case information, searching by defendant or plaintiff name in an individual court across the country.

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