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CitiGroup Alledged Fraud in Mexico

Unusual fraud case where the victim of theh fraud, CitiBank, is fined for not having better fraud protection in place. 

Mexican Regulator Fines Citigroup’s Banamex Over Alleged Fraud

Banamex Fined About $2 Million for Failing to Prevent Alleged Fraud Against Bank by Oceanografía

MEXICO CITY—Mexico’s banking regulator said Wednesday it has fined the local unit of Citigroup Inc. a little more than $2 million for failing to prevent an alleged fraud against the bank by a client, oil-services firm Oceanografía.

Citigroup said in February that its Mexican unit, Banamex, had been duped in an alleged accounting fraud by Mexican firm Oceanografía, which resulted in a pretax loss of about $400 million for the bank.

g. After nearly two months under house arrest, Oceanografía Chief Executive and controlling shareholder Amado Yáñez Osuna was released in early June on $6.2 million bail. Mr. Yáñez, who is facing charges of bank fraud in Mexico, hasn’t made any comments on the matter.

The Mexican regulator, the CNBV, said Wednesday that in its review of Oceanografía’s relationship with Banamex, it found actions that could be considered crimes.

The regulator also said that Banamex should have had better internal controls in place to prevent such losses.

Banamex said in a statement that it has accepted and paid the fine. The bank said it has carried out exhaustive investigations since it detected and denounced the presumed crimes, and has taken corrective measures.

Citigroup has fired 12 Banamex employees over the incident. The Mexican attorney general is seeking two of those former employees for further questioning.

The incident also has led to the departure of high-level employees at the bank, with Citigroup announcing this month that Banamex Chief Executive Javier Arrigunaga had resigned.

Originally posted by Amy Guthrie for the Wall St. Journal online.

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