Yesterday, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Federal Reserve) barred five former private bankers and senior managers of Credit Suisse AG (Credit Suisse) from employment in the banking industry. The five individuals were indicted in July 2011, along with three other individuals, for conspiracy to defraud the U.S. government by assisting U.S. citizens’ evasion of federal income taxes and, according to the Federal Reserve’s action, have not entered the United States to answer the indictment. The Federal Reserve’s bar is effective until the indictment is disposed of or until terminated by the Federal Reserve.
Yesterday’s action follows related coordinated actions taken on May 19, 2014, against Credit Suisse by the Federal Reserve, the U.S. Department of Justice and the New York Department of Financial Services. In those actions, Credit Suisse pleaded guilty to conspiracy to aid and assist U.S. taxpayers in filing false income tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service, paid $2.6 billion in penalties and agreed to undertake a series of remedial measures. In its May 2014 action against Credit Suisse, the Federal Reserve stated that it was continuing to investigate whether separate enforcement actions should be taken against individuals involved in the illegal conduct and included, seemingly for the first time, a provision requiring Credit Suisse to terminate and not employ in the future individuals who participated in the illegal conduct. The Federal Reserve has since made similar statements concerning ongoing investigations into individual misconduct and included a similar provision addressing individual accountability in at least two other high-profile enforcement actions, both of which involved violations of U.S. sanctions or anti-money laundering laws: the June 30, 2014, action against BNP Paribas S.A. and the March 12, 2015, action against Commerzbank AG.