Should authorities suspend HSBC from sponsoring sporting events?

You may ask why say the PGA Tour should bite the hand that feeds it. Well, if you are a tour player and become involved with drugs you can be suspended for violating the PGA Tour drugs policy. But what happens if you are a tournament sponsor? 

HSBC have been found guilty of laundering money for drug cartels. You could have the situation where prize money and appearance money are being funded from the proceeds of laundering drug money. It seems the PGA Tour will turn a blind eye to these activities for a sponsor but not a player.

"In an age of international terrorism, drug violence in our streets and on our borders, and organized crime, stopping illicit money flows that support those atrocities is a national security imperative”
Senator Carl Levin

HSBC report findings;

high-profile clients involved in drug trafficking
millions of dollars of suspicious bulk travellers cheques
a resistance to closing accounts linked to suspicious activity
HSBC US (HBUS) classed Mexico as a low-risk country and as a result, failed to properly monitor its transfers and other dealings with it.

US laws prevent banks doing business with what it regards as the most dangerous individuals and countries.

HSBC frequently circumvented the rules designed to prevent dealings with Iran, Burma, North Korea and Iran.

Actions taken to get around these safeguards in the system "may have facilitated transactions on half of terrorists, drug traffickers or other wrongdoers.

For example, HBUS carried out 28,000 undisclosed sensitive transactions between 2001 and 2007. The vast majority of those transactions - worth $19.7bn - involved Iran.

Two affiliates, HSBC Europe and HSBC Middle East repeatedly altered transaction information to take out any reference to Iran.

HSBC did business with Saudi Arabia's biggest financial institution, Al Rajhi Bank.

The report claims that after the terrorist attacks in the US on 11 September 2001, evidence emerged that Al Rajhi and some of its owners had links to financial organisations associated with terrorism.

HSBC cleared large amounts of travellers' checks over a number of years, without proper anti-money laundering controls, despite evidence of suspicious activity.

It would seem the US PGA Tour regard the above activities as acceptable behaviour for a tournament sponsor. After all the money has to come from somewhere.

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