HSBC laundered billions for drugs cartels, and merely had to pay fines. No one went to prison. The federal government is essentially running a protection racket. Dirty companies pay large fines (which are mostly trivial for them), promise to sin no more then use new methods to continue doing what they were doing. Sure, there are law enforcement officials in the trenches working hard to break the cartels. However, much of what they do gets undone at a very high level by the refusal of the federal government to put corrupt bankers in prison. This means the entire system has been compromised.
Cartel operatives would sometimes deposit hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash in a single day using boxes designed to fit the exact dimensions of the teller’s window at HSBC branches in Mexico.
The bank ignored basic anti-money laundering controls, as the investigation found. In 2007 and 2008, the bank’s personnel in Mexico wired $7 billion dollars to corresponding U.S. dollar accounts in New York. These were more dollars than even larger Mexican banks wired to U.S. accounts. ICE says some of it was drug proceeds.
California is now the primary conduit for meth into the US. A primary cause is huge cutbacks in the California Dept of Justice. Now, golly, why would there be huge cutbacks at an agency. Oh wait, because billions more dirty money can then flow into the US and into greedy corrupt banks and hedge funds?