Persian Gulf Bank Allegedly Helped Iran Skirt Sanctions for a Decade

Documents from the Bahraini government show that a bank took part in a “multibillion-dollar corruption scheme...that secretly helped Iran evade sanctions for more than a decade,” according to The Washington Post. The now-closed Future Bank, which was owned by Iran’s two biggest lenders, “routinely altered financial documents to mask illicit trade between Iran and dozens of foreign partners,” the papers charge. The documents indicate that at least $7 billion worth of transactions were concealed between 2004 and 2015, when Iranian banks were prohibited from “accessing international financial markets” due to sanctions. Auditors also found hundreds of bank accounts tied to individuals with a history of money laundering and terror financing. Bahraini officials have said the crimes covered in the documents are likely just scratching the surface. “The ramifications rising from Future Bank’s systemic malfeasance cannot be overestimated,” the kingdom wrote to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague.