Dani Alexis Ryskamp, J.D., 22 January 2021
Deutsche Bank recently agreed to pay over $130 million in a settlement involving two separate claims—that Deutsche Bank paid bribes for overseas business and that it was involved in the manipulation of metal markets. The settlement’s terms also include a three-year deferred prosecution agreement.
The allegations of bribery against Deutsche Bank dates back to 2019 when the New York Times reported that the bank had been involved in bribes given to politically influential people in China—including a $4,254 wine. Other outlets also reported claims that Deutsche Bank paid bribes in Saudi Arabia disguised as “referral fees” and in Abu Dhabi as “consultancy” fees. Following an investigation by the U.S. government, Deutsche Bank was found to be in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) for its dealings in several foreign locations. The settlement includes $123 million in fines, payable to the U.S. Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to settle these FCPA claims. In a statement from the Justice Department, the government further explains Deutsche Bank faced allegations that it hired consultants to manage the bank’s bribes to various foreign officials—the purpose of which was to secure various business projects. The bank then attempted to cover up the purpose of the payments to those consultants, says the DOJ.