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Citigroup fires 11 more in fraud probe of unit Banamex -memo

A logo of Banamex is seen in Mexico City February 28, 2014. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

NEW YORK/MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Citigroup has fired 11 more people, including four senior executives, after an ongoing internal investigation found lax controls and bogus loans at its Mexican unit Banamex, according to an internal memo sent to employees on Wednesday.

Of the four managing directors that were terminated, two were business heads in Mexico. Further disciplinary action could be taken against other employees both inside and outside of Mexico as the investigation continues, the memo said.

Citigroup said in February it had discovered at least $400 million (238.4 million pounds) of fraudulent loans at Banamex, prompting the bank to reduce its 2013 profit by $235 million.

The bank fired one employee around the time it announced the alleged fraud. That staff member was directly involved, while the ones subsequently let go failed to do enough to protect the bank from the fraud, Citigroup Chief Executive Corbat wrote in the memo obtained by Reuters.

The bad loans were made to Mexican oil services company Oceanografia, a contractor for Mexican state-owned oil company Pemex. Oceanografia appeared to have falsified invoices to Pemex that were used as collateral for loans from Banamex.

Reporting by David Henry in New York and Elinor Comlay in Mexico City; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe and Bernadette Baum

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