HSBC in new money laundering scandal

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Banking giant HSBC, which was hit with a US fine for money laundering last year, is facing fresh accusations of illegal activity in Argentina, reports accountancy services Harris & Co.

Argentina has alleged that the bank used "fake receipts" to facilitate money laundering and tax evasion, and launder 392m pesos ($77m; £50m).

The country"s tax authority said it had filed criminal charges against HSBC.

HSBC said that it would cooperate with the investigation, adding that the allegations were "of great concern".

"We are committed to working cooperatively with authorities to ensure a thorough review and appropriate resolution of the matter," said Lyssette Bravo, a spokeswoman for HSBC.

Last year, HSBC agreed to pay US authorities $1.9bn (£1.2bn) in a settlement over money laundering, the largest paid in such a case.

Argentina laid out its case against HSBC late on Monday.

"On the basis of what"s been investigated so far, in six months we"ve recorded 392 million pesos in fraudulent transactions, generated by evasion and money laundering," said Ricardo Echegaray, head of Argentina"s tax agency.

Mr Echegaray added that HSBC also helped clients evade taxes on an additional 224m pesos.

"We hope to recover what is due and see the courts apply an appropriate penalty," he said.

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