Washington, D.C. May 10, 2019. Reuters, citing Danish newspaper Borsen, reported Tuesday that Danish prosecutors have charged Thomas Borgen, former chief executive of Danske Bank for his role in what some have called the biggest money-laundering scandal in world banking history.
Borgen, who was in charge of Danske Bank’s international operations, including Estonia, between 2009 and 2012, resigned in September after an investigation revealed the scale of the suspicious payments.
A British trader in Danske Bank’s Estonia office, Howard Wilkinson, confidentially raised concerns over the illegal money-laundering scheme in 2013. Mr. Wilkinson, who worked for Danske Bank’s Estonia branch from 2007 to 2014, wrote four whistleblower reports about the dirty money, some of which was coming from Russia.
The Danske Bank money laundering scandal exposed Denmark’s lack of whistleblower protections which prevented Mr. Wilkinson from reporting banking irregularities directly to law enforcement after the bank refused to act on his internal reports.
“Bank executives who facilitated money laundering must be held accountable,” said whistleblower lawyer Stephen M. Kohn, who represents Mr. Wilkinson. According to Reuters, Danish prosecutors raided Borgen’s home on March 12 and cited that unnamed sources claim at least two other former Danske Bank managers have been charged for their roles in the money-laundering scheme.
Authorities in several countries are investigating Danske Bank, including the United States, where it could face significant fines.