French bank Credit Agricole is expected to pay a fine of £516 million to settle charges of breaking US sanctions in the Middle East.

The settlement, which is due to be finalised later this week, follows an investigation by the US into European banks transactions with Iran and other countries under sanction. Rival bank BNP Paribas paid an $8.9 billion fine earlier this year for similar allegations.

Credit Agricole stands accused of transferring billions of dollars to accounts held by entities such as Iran, Sudan and Cuba between 2003 and 2008.

According to a source, most of the bankers involved in the wrongdoing have already been dismissed from the bank.

The fine will be part of a deferred prosecution agreement, meaning that it will not have to plead guilty to any charges as long as it meets the requirements of the agreement.


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