News Release 2013-147 | September 24, 2013

OCC Assesses $4.1 Million Civil Money Penalty Against Saddle River Valley Bank for Bank Secrecy Act Violations

WASHINGTON—The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today announced a $4.1 million civil money penalty (CMP) against Saddle River Valley Bank, Montclair, New Jersey, for violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA). 

The CMP follows a cease and desist order issued by the OCC in October 2011, which directed the bank to correct deficiencies in its BSA and anti-money laundering programs and required an independent review of the bank’s wire and account activity for the period the bank held relationships with several casas de cambio (CDCs).  As a result of the review, the bank filed more than 190 suspicious activity reports (SARs) that should have been filed earlier.

The OCC is taking this action in coordination with the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, which announced a $4.1 million civil forfeiture action against the bank, and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), which took a separate enforcement action against the bank.

The actions announced today result from concurrent investigations by the OCC, U.S. Department of Justice, and FinCEN.  The investigations followed an examination of the bank’s account and transaction activity that revealed the bank processed more than $1.5 billion in wire transfers from June 2009 to April 2011 for four CDC accounts.  The bank conducted transactions for these accounts without an adequate BSA program.

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