Today, one day after my article entitled "Bankster Bastards," the AIB has been fined €2.275m for anti-money laundering and terrorist financing compliance failures by the Central Bank after admitting six breaches of the Criminal Justice Act.
"The Central Bank said it identified six breaches of the 2010 Criminal Justice Act as a result of significant failures in AIB’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing controls, policies, and procedures”. It said the breaches occurred after the enactment of the act in July 2010 and persisted on average for over three years," according to the Irish Examiner.
To receive a fine of two and quarter million you'd have to think the amount of dirty money that Allied Irish Bank handled for the criminal fraternity must have run to hundreds of millions. If the Kinehans and their ilk opened the accounts then it is drug money, pure and simple. But whatever its source, the AIB were happy to take the dosh and ignore the Criminal Justice Act as if it did not apply to them.
So for mis-appropriating €144,089 of a bank's money, as we heard yesterday, Alice Greeley suffered a loss of reputation, the loss of her livelihood and a year in jail to boot. She was arrested, hauled through the courts and had her name spattered all over the media. All of her family and friends were led to believe that the woman is bad or evil. When she is released from jail she will never work again. In short, her whole life is ruined for taking peanuts from a bank slush fund for senior managers. That folks is what happens to the little people for relatively minor amounts.
So let's have a look here, shall we? What happens to people who contravene the Criminal Justice Law and break the Bank's own procedures by profiting from hundreds of millions in criminal monies? Where does the buck stop at the AIB? Indeed, what person or persons at the bank had the seniority to decide to turn a blind eye on the suspicious amounts lodged by known dodgy looking characters? Which person or persons were nominated to alert the Central Bank and the Revenue Commissioners in such a situation? And of course the crunch question is who or what persons are going to go to jail for this and have their lives ruined just like Alice? As it stands the two million fine is like a fine speck of dust on a manager's lapel, there to be flicked off.
I'd say you needn't hold you breath on it though. I doubt that Bernard Byrne, CEO of AIB, will lose a moments sleep over it because he's highly unlikely to appear before Judge Melanie Greally any time soon no matter what criminality he were to engage in.