Magazine article American Banker

Fox to Exit Fincen, Take B of A Laundering Post

Magazine article American Banker

Fox to Exit Fincen, Take B of A Laundering Post

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON -- The director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network announced Monday that he will leave the agency Friday for a top anti-laundering post at Bank of America Corp.

William J. Fox told Fincen about his plan Jan. 20 but was asked not to announce it until more government officials could be informed. On Feb. 21 he will become a senior compliance executive for financial crimes in the banking company's compliance risk management division. He will be based in Charlotte.

William Baity, Fincen's deputy director since 1995, will become the agency's acting director Saturday.

The serious but self-effacing Mr. Fox joined Fincen in December 2003 and is credited with raising its profile and brokering major deals with other bank regulators. Before joining Fincen he had been an associate deputy general counsel and an acting deputy general counsel at the Treasury Department.

"I've been working on these issues since Sept. 12, 2001," he said in an interview. "It's been a sprint. You can only sprint so long. I've gotten to the point where I am tired, and I think it's time to give another bloke a shot."

He said that announcing his decision earlier might have undermined his ability to lead Fincen effectively.

"The minute something like this gets public, I'm as useful as an old dishrag," Mr. Fox said. "I'm not one for farewell tours. I don't like feeling useless. I think it's unfair to an agency to announce something like this and then to linger around for cocktail parties. …

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