HSBC is to recruit a line-up of heavyweight figures including Britain’s former top taxman to oversee a new effort to combat financial crime following the bank’s $1.9bn settlement of money-laundering allegations late last year.
I have learnt that Dave Hartnett, former head of Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC), and Bill Hughes, former head of the Serious Organised Crime Agency, are among a group that will head a new financial crime committee that will be set up to ensure tighter compliance with tightening global regulations.
The formation of the committee, which will report directly to Douglas Flint, HSBC’s chairman, and Stuart Gulliver, its chief executive, is expected to be announced today, according to insiders at the bank.
I hope Hartnett does a good job for HSBC – heaven knows they need someone who will.
But I also hope, just a little, that he may also come out and campaign for tax justice too. Despite it all, I think that’s still somewhere at his core. And I don’t think that’s wishful thinking: that’s the man I met for some time. And he could do a power of good if he were to use his knowledge now to say HMRC must have the powers it needs to stop the corruption of tax abuse.
Go on Dave, you could do it.