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Howard Wilkinson

Bank Fraud Whistleblower
Howard Wilkinson

Howard Wilkinson

Howard Wilkinson is a former employee of Danske Bank who confidentially raised concerns over an illegal money laundering scheme in 2013. In September of 2018, news reports on the $234 billion scandals revealed the existence of a whistleblower but not the identity. Mr. Wilkinson had wished to remain anonymous, but his name was leaked to an Estonia newspaper.

“Mr. Wilkinson is an international hero,” said Stephen M. Kohn, Chairman of the National Whistleblower Center. “He risked his career and livelihood to stop a massive money-laundering operation and to hold banks accountable,” Kohn added.

The investigation is ongoing. Mr. Wilkinson is represented by top whistleblower attorneys Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto, LLP (“KKC”), who sent demands on September 2018 to law enforcement authorities in Estonia and Denmark take actions to protect Howard Wilkinson from whistleblower retaliation.

He has testified before the Danish Parliament and European Parliament. He also had an inclusive interview with 60 Minutes explaining how he exposed the biggest money-laundering scandal in history.

Overview of the Danske Bank Scandal

Mr. Wilkinson is a former employee of Danske Bank who confidentially raised concerns over an illegal money laundering scheme in 2013. In September 2018, news reports on the $234 billion money-laundering scandal revealed the existence of a whistleblower but not the identity. Mr. Wilkinson had wished to remain anonymous, but soon thereafter his name was leaked to an Estonia newspaper.

Mr. Wilkinson is represented by Stephen M. Kohn, a leading whistleblower attorney and founding partner of the Washington, D.C.-based firm Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto, and Chairman of the Board of Directors for the National Whistleblower Center. Mr. Kohn has over 30 years of experience advocating for whistleblowers around the world.

Numerous European law enforcement agencies are now investigating what many believe may be the largest money laundering scheme in history, with billions of dollars reportedly flowing from Russia and other former Soviet states, through Estonia and to major banks such as Deutsche Bank, Bank of America, and JP Morgan. Watch Wilkinson and Kohn’s testimony at the European Parliament here.

In the U.S., the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Internal Revenue Service, and Department of Justice are investigating the scandal. According to the Wall Street Journal, the IRS has the authority to restrict the supply of U.S. dollars flowing to banks when money-laundering is suspected. This is known as a “death blow sanction” that can send a foreign bank into collapse.

Why It Matters

The Danske Bank scandal raises a host of public policy issues regarding how to prevent banks from assisting large-scale criminal syndicates with their ill-gotten gains. A key focus of the National Whistleblower Center (NWC) is to highlight the critical role of whistleblower protections in making money-laundering schemes known to law enforcement officials and policymakers, and in providing them the steady supply of information needed to prosecute wrongdoers and enact policy solutions.

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