Cyprus Central Bank revokes license of FBME Bank branch, bank to mount legal challenge

NICOSIA, Cyprus – The Central Bank of Cyprus has revoked the operating license for the local branch of Tanzania’s FBME Bank Ltd.

In a statement Tuesday, the central bank gave no reason for the decision, which took effect a day earlier. Central Bank spokeswoman Aliki Stylianou declined to elaborate.

On Monday, FBME said it rejected the revocation “in its entirety” and would challenge the decision in the Cypriot courts.

The Cyprus Central Bank placed FBME’s Cyprus branch under administration last year.

FBME said that decision was based on the “disputed findings” of the U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, or FinCen.

In July, FinCen formally concluded that FBME was used by customers involved in money laundering, fraud and terrorist financing, and barred U.S. banks from any dealings through or on behalf of FBME.