Swiss banks have begun reporting suspicious account activity from some of their Saudi clients to the Swiss Money Laundering Reporting Office, according to a report in the Financial Times.
Quoting unnamed sources close to the situation, the newspaper is reporting that lawyers working on behalf of the banks began submitting information about a week ago, with “several dozen submissions” expected to be made as part of the process.
At the moment, the submissions have not led to any further action – such as the freezing of accounts - from Swiss authorities. According to Swiss regulations, Saudi authorities must make a formal request to access the financial data which is being analysed by authorities in Switzerland.
According to one of the FT’s sources, the reporting into Saudi accounts is similar to that conducted in other investigations, such as into FIFA or Brazilian oil company Petrobras.
The move comes just a month after Saudi authorities launched a widespread crackdown on corruption which led to the arrest over 200 people, including princes and well-known businessmen.
As part of the anti-corruption campaign, Saudi authorities have asked local and foreign banks to disclose if they have credit facilities and safe deposit boxes used by those who have been detained.
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