Payment Processor Fined

It is reported that U.S. prosecutors yesterday reached an agreement not to file charges against the payment processing company Electronic Clearing House Inc.

US authorities are said to have had an ongoing investigation into eProcessors, and ECH have given them full cooperation. Although not mentioned, it is widely assumed the payment processor is NETeller.

ECH was involved in the transfer of money on behalf of online payment services, commonly known as ‘e-wallets’, and did so for nearly 7 years, mostly for online gambling companies.

They have been cooperating with prosecutors since January and it is reported that they have agreed to disgorge $2.3 million, representing the net proceeds from the services it provided to e-wallets since 2001.

ECH shares were off 37 cents, or 3 percent, at $11.86 in midday trading on Nasdaq on Wednesday, after the news emerged.

The company have not issued a statement as yet, except to state on Tuesday that it was a witness in a federal investigation and expected a non-prosecution agreement with the government. It also said that a deal to be acquired by financial software maker Intuit Inc. had been called off. The companies entered into a merger agreement on 14th December 2006.

The US Attorneys office commented that a criminal prosecution of the company would not serve the public interest.

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