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Tech & Science Westpac's Maxsted 'unreservedly apologises', backs Hartzer

07:30  27 november  2019
07:30  27 november  2019 Source:   smh.com.au

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Westpac chairman Lindsay Maxsted has backed the bank’ s embattled chief executive Brian Hartzer after the lender was thrown into turmoil by a The board unreservedly apologises ," Mr Maxsted said in a statement. “Our board, CEO and management team are fully committed to fixing these issues and

The board unreservedly apologises ," Maxsted said in the statement. Pat Hobson, who worked as a Westpac branch and call centre salesperson for 28 years and owns a few thousand "It was more just click the buttons and get it out of the way, get it done, get back on the phones because you had your

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Westpac chairman Lindsay Maxsted has apologised "unreservedly" for the bank's mass breach of anti-money laundering laws, backing chief executive Brian Hartzer and ordering a review aimed at ensuring there is accountability for the scandal.

Following a high-stakes meeting of directors on Friday, Mr Maxsted issued a statement saying the bank's board was "devastated" by the issues raised in a bombshell lawsuit from a regulator this week.

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The board unreservedly apologizes ," Maxsted said in the statement. Pat Hobson, who worked as a Westpac branch and call center salesperson for 28 years and owns a few thousand Westpac shares, said staff were tested on regulatory compliance every six months.

Westpac ' s Maxsted ' unreservedly apologises ' as board backs Hartzer . Westpac chairman Lindsay Maxsted has backed the bank's embattled chief executive Brian Hartzer after the lender was thrown into turmoil by a money-laundering compliance scandal.

The regulator, AUSTRAC, has accused the bank of 23 million breaches and it alleged Westpac failed to adequately vet thousands of transactions that could be linked to child exploitation in the Philippines and other parts of south-east Asia.

“The notion that any child has been hurt as a result of any failings by Westpac is deeply distressing and we are truly sorry. The board unreservedly apologises," Mr Maxsted said.

“Our board, CEO and management team are fully committed to fixing these issues and we are taking all steps necessary to urgently close any remaining gaps and fix our policies and procedures so that this can never happen again."

a man in a suit standing in front of a computer screen: Westpac chairman Lindsay Maxsted has backed chief executive Brian Hartzer. © Wayne Taylor Westpac chairman Lindsay Maxsted has backed chief executive Brian Hartzer. AUSTRAC's lawsuit said 12 customers of the bank had made suspicious payments that suggested they were linked to child exploitation. The watchdog has since referred the details to police.

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  Westpac CEO resigning is 'welcomed and appropriate' Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt says “it’s welcomed and appropriate” for Westpac Chief Executive Brian Hartzer to step down following revelations the bank facilitated terror money laundering and child exploitation. Westpac Group Chairman Lindsay Maxsted made the announcement on Tuesday saying the board accepted the “gravity” of allegations levelled against it. © AAP Image/Joel Carrett Westpac. Mr Hunt told Sky News Prime Minister Scott Morrison was “absolutely clear” when these revelations came out that the board had to “reflect” on its leadership.

Westpac ' s Maxsted ' unreservedly apologises ' as board backs Hartzer . Westpac chairman Lindsay Maxsted has backed the bank's embattled chief executive Brian Hartzer after the lender was thrown into turmoil by a money-laundering compliance scandal.

The Westpac chief executive Brian Hartzer has resigned and chairman Lindsay Maxsted will step down early following a money laundering scandal involving allegations the bank failed to stop transactions with the Philippines involving child exploitation.

Mr Maxsted said the bank had "taken action" on all of the customers identified by AUSTRAC and established a review, which included making improvements to its anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing (AML/CTF) systems.

“This review includes accelerating our ongoing program of AML/CTF improvements and we willprovide public updates on our progress," he said.

The statement was released after Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday repeated his call for the board to take responsibility for the scandal, while refusing to comment on whether Mr Hartzer should step down.

"There has to be some understanding of accountability for when these things happen," Mr Morrison said on Friday morning.

With investors also piling pressure on the board, Mr Maxsted said the bank would appoint independent experts to oversee the program, which would include a review of accountability.

"We will take actions emerging from that review. An assessment of suitably qualified candidates to lead that review is underway."

He said the bank had started talking with community groups about whether there were further steps it could take to fight child exploitation.

“We are continuing to work closely with AUSTRAC to accelerate resolution of the matter," Mr Maxsted said. “The board will provide an update in coming days to share more information on what has occurred and what steps we are taking.”

Super fund HESTA pushes Westpac board for more action .
Superannuation giant HESTA has warned its support for reappointing Westpac directors will be influenced by whether the board can lay out a clear plan for improving governance and culture.As Westpac reels from a money laundering crisis that has already forced the resignations of chairman Lindsay Maxsted and chief executive Brian Hartzer, the $53 billion fund has written to Mr Maxsted seeking answers on further steps the bank will take to fix governance and cultural problems.

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