Attorney general nominee defends outcome of money-laundering probe involving British bank

President Barack Obama's nominee for attorney general is defending her office's handling of a money-laundering investigation involving British bank HSBC.

The bank in 2012 agreed to pay $1.9 billion to settle the investigation, in a deal sparing individual executives from prosecution.

Loretta Lynch, who's awaiting Senate confirmation as attorney general, is the top federal prosecutor for the Eastern District of New York, the office that handled the case.

Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, the Senate Judiciary Committee chairman, asked Lynch a series of questions about the Justice Department's handling of the case, including the decision not to prosecute bank executives.

In written responses received by the committee Thursday, Lynch defended the deal and said it had produced consequences that are "perhaps the most stringent ever imposed on a financial institution."