BuzzSouthAfrica gathered that the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) has levied an R11 million fine on India’s Bank of Baroda (BOB) for helping the Gupta family buy the Optimum coal mine from Glencore in 2016.
The Bank of Baroda was slapped with the outrageous fine after an investigation by auditing group, Deloitte, found that violated a range of anti-corruption and money laundering laws during its transaction with the Guptas.
Documents compiled by Deloitte also showed the Indian bank specifically breached several provisions in the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) Act and had failed to verify the names of people who deposited money into Gupta’s Tegata bank account at the BOB.
HuffPost reported that an exclusive document detailing Deloitte’s investigation is currently in possession of Moneyweb – a South African media.
According to report, auditing group, Deloitte launched an investigation into the Gupta family’s dealings with BOB after the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) gave it the permission to proceed.
Investigations into the acquisition of the family’s R2.15 billion coal mine became necessary after a state capture report by former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela implicated the Guptas.
Similarly, another investigation by Nexia SAB&T – BOB’s auditor – also found a series of other irregularities related to the Optimum transaction. The irregularities are being investigated, according to reports.
The Bank of Baroda was the last bank that came to the Guptas’ aid after other banks terminated business transactions with them.
The bank, however, announced in July that it will cut business ties with the family at the end of August following allegations on state capture.
Last month, the Organization Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) wrote to the Registrar of Banks and the Financial Intelligence Centre, asking them to ensure that the Bank of Baroda and the Bank of India cease all business with the Guptas, and revoke their licenses to trade within South Africa.
OUTA had claimed that businesses linked to the Guptas raised about R1bn in bank loans and that the Bank of India assisted the with bonds of R176m.
The remaining came from the Bank of Baroda and FirstRand. While BOB provided bonds valued at R811m, the remaining R11m came from FirstRand.
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