Norway FSA fines Santander bank $1 million for anti-money laundering breach

FILE PHOTO: A pigeon stands on the logo of Spain's biggest bank Santander in downtown Malaga, southern Spain, April 1, 2016. REUTERS/Jon Nazca/File Photo

OSLO/MADRID (Reuters) - Norway's Financial Supervisory Authority has ordered Spanish bank Santander SAN.MC to pay a fine of nine million crowns ($1 million) for violations of the country's anti-money laundering laws, it said on Tuesday.

The fine was imposed in relation to violations found at Santander Consumer Bank in Norway, the regulator said in a letter dated June 28 and published on its website on Tuesday.

A failure in the bank’s electronic monitoring system meant that some 1.6 million transactions, affecting around 300,000 customers, were not controlled for money laundering between Oct. 30, 2014 and Dec. 6, 2018, the letter said.

After the problem was solved, it added, Santander backchecked all the transactions that had not been checked in the period and found no violation worth reporting to police.

Santander said it noted the FSA’s decision and would decide on future steps in due course.

“Santander Consumer Bank has fully cooperated with and kept the FSA fully continuously informed,” a company spokeswoman said in an emailed statement.

“The IT error was connected to the integration of old and new IT systems. Santander Consumer Bank has made several improvements to our IT systems and routines.”

Reporting by Gwladys Fouche in Oslo and Jesus Aguado in Madrid; editing by David Evans