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Deutsche Bank to pay $100 million to avoid bribery charge

NEW YORK (AP) — Deutsche Bank agreed Friday to pay fines and penalties of more than $100 million to avoid a criminal prosecution on charges it participated in a foreign bribery scheme.

Lawyers for the bank waived its right to face an indictment on conspiracy charges during a teleconference with a federal judge in New York City.

Federal prosecutors in Brooklyn didn’t reveal at the hearing which nations were involved. Previously, the bank has agreed to a Securities and Exchange Commission fine of $16 million to resolve separate allegations of corrupt dealings in Russia and China.

A Deutsche Bank spokesman, Dan Hunter, declined to comment on the specifics of the case. But he said that the deferred prosecution agreement showed that the bank was taking responsibility for its actions and that its cooperation with federal authorities “reflect our transparency and determination to put these matters firmly in the past.”

The resolution comes in the waning days of the administration of President Donald Trump, who had a longtime personal business association with a bank that has been under scrutiny for years.

The bank, based in Frankfurt, Germany, agreed to pay the state of New York $150 million to settle claims that it broke compliance rules in its dealings with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. The wealthy financier killed himself last August in a Manhattan federal jail while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.

There also were reports last year that the bank gave expensive gifts to senior Chinese officials and others establish itself as a major player in China’s financial industry.