FinCEN files: 53 Kenyan banks, individuals made illicit transactions worth Ksh.6 trillion

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Several Kenyan entities, companies and individuals are part of more than USD 2 trillion in suspicious transactions unearthed in a year-long investigation.

At least 53 Kenyan companies and individuals appear in a leak of banking records submitted to the US Department of Treasury as suspicious financial activity amounting to $60 billion (approximately over Ksh.6 trillion).

Twenty-four Kenyan financial institutions were named in the report as either beneficiaries’ banks or banks through which companies and individuals made suspicious payments from countries.

According to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) who made the documents public, most of the funds are proceeds of crime, corruption and tax evasion.

“We just looked into one company and the transactions from that one entity was Ksh.300 million, and we are looking at 53 entities, so just a rough calculation of the funds is USD 60 billion on the lower side,” said Purity Ngondi of Africa Uncensored.

According to Ngondi who was part of the 400-member team of journalists from the ICIJ, most of the funds are proceeds of bribery, corruption tax fraud and money laundering.

Some of the sectors and individuals involved include oil companies, pharmaceutical and medical products companies, travel agents, online forex trading  businesses, telecommunication companies, manufacturing companies, government entities and past politicians.

In the report some of the illegal transactions were made to look like payments that were made in coffee exports.

“The scale at which this impacts a country like Kenya is unbelievable. You have a company that allegedly paid Ksh.300 million in coffee payments and if you look closely they are not based in Kenya and the payments are being made to a tax haven,” added Ngondi.

The documents, submitted by some of the world’s largest banks to the US Department of Treasury’s financial crimes enforcement network, also known as FinCEN, were obtained by BuzzFeed news.

The FinCEN files is a cache of financial intelligence reports that reveals the role of global banks in industrial-scale money laundering and the bloodshed and suffering that flow in its wake.

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Source: citizentv.co.ke