U.S. authorities have blacklisted one of Beirutâ€™s major financial institutions, Lebanese Canadian Bank, alleging that it is part of a drug trafficking network that benefited the banned Islamist group Hezbollah.
The bank was involved in a complex scheme in which cocaine was shipped from Colombia and Panama and retailed in Europe and the Middle East, U.S. officials said. They alleged that the proceeds were deposited with LCB in Beirut, wired to U.S. accounts and used to buy second-hand cars that were resold in western Africa.[Source]
Over 200 million dollars were being laundered on a monthly basis according to the report.
This is going to be bad news for a lot of Lebanese. Assuming this is true, The Central Bank will probably take out the bank’s license and save whatever is left of it before it’s too late, because I am assuming people have started taking out their money from the bank already.
The Bank has already issued a statement on its main website claiming it has nothing to do with this. They were one of Lebanon’s top banks and were building their new headquarters in the middle of the Martyrs square.
Update: here’s the alleged money laundering scheme.