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Banco de Crédito's operations suspended at Guatemalan regulator's request

Banco de Guatemala's board unanimously decided to suspend the operations of Banco de Crédito SA, which recently made headlines after one of its directors was arrested in the U.S. on money laundering charges.

The suspension, which aims to preserve banking sector stability in the Central American country, is in line with a request from the SIB banking regulator, the central bank said, adding that Banco de Crédito represents just 0.2% of banking system assets in Guatemala.

Officials have been appointed to oversee Banco de Crédito's orderly and timely exit from the country's banking system.

In November, Banco de Crédito director Álvaro Estuardo Cobar Bustamante was arrested in Florida after recorded conversations allegedly showed him agreeing to accept money earned from drug trafficking and move the illicit funds to the U.S.

The arrest prompted the central bank to order an audit into the lender, although government officials said the case is an isolated incident.