April 14, 2021

DOJ indicts two bankers for conducting $1 billion in transactions without following AML protocols

On April 14, 2021, the US Department of Justice announced the indictment of two defendants in the Eastern District of New York for failing to maintain anti-money laundering controls, failing to file suspicious activity reports and operating an unlicensed money transmitting business. According to the indictment that was unsealed on April 14, 2021, Gyanendra Asre and Hanan Ofer participated in a scheme that facilitated more than $1 billion in suspicious transactions without utilizing any anti-money laundering controls by processing lucrative, high-risk international business transactions through small, unsophisticated financial institutions.

According to Asre and Ofer, between 2014 and 2016, the New York State Employees Federal Credit Union (NYSEFCU) allowed the two to conduct high-risk transactions totaling more than $1 billion through the credit union and other financial institutions, including hundreds of millions of dollars in transactions that originated in foreign jurisdictions.  During the relevant period, Asre allegedly worked in a compliance capacity as a member of the Supervisory Committee of NYSEFCU, and owned and operated DDH Group LLC, a money transmitting business and money services business, with Ofer (the DDH Group President) without required licenses or registrations.  Prosecutors allege that Asre willfully failed to implement anti-money laundering protocols throughout his tenure with NYSEFCU, causing the credit union to process a multitude of high-risk transactions without submitting any Suspicious Activity Reports as required under the Bank Secrecy Act.

The DOJ reports that both defendants were scheduled to be arraigned on April 14, 2021.

Department of Justice Press Release | Unsealed Indictment