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| Dhaka, Thursday, 18 January 2018

Amjad Hossain

The Report

Money laundered thru Sonali Bank ‘SWIFT’ forgery

2016-02-04 16:58:05
Money laundered thru Sonali Bank ‘SWIFT’ forgery

An amount of Tk 2.0 crore has been laundered to Turkey in collusion with two Sonali Bank officials at its Shilpa Bhaban branch.

A criminal case has been filed with the Motijheel police station against two employees of the branch accusing them of getting involved in the money-laundering. They are the branch’s employee Monowar Hossain and SEO Md Shah Alam, who is acting as a messenger and supervising the SWIFT operation. The case is now being investigated by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC). It has been learnt from Bangladesh Bank sources.

The Society for World Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) is used as a network for international financial transaction. Using the network one bank sends a message to another for the purpose of monetary transaction.

Sources say the money was transferred from the account of Vintage Textile at the Shilpa Bhaban corporate branch of the Sonali Bank to its UK branch through a SWIFT message forgery. The money was transferred to the account of Dudru Topcuglu, a client at the Turk Tkonomi Bankasi A.S, Besiktas branch in Turkey. The money was deposited with the account no. TR870003200000000014936937. Then it was withdrawn from the Nuruosmaniye branch in Turkey and deposited with the IBAN number TR42000320002540000004455 at Nadir Doviz ve Kiymetli Maden Tic A.S.

Sonali Bank’s Shilpa Bhaban branch junior officer (IT) Monowar Hossain, who is involved in the SWIFT operation, and SEO Md Shah Alam acting as a messenger have been found involved in the forgery.

When asked about this, Sonali Bank Managing Director Pradip Kumar Datta did not agree to make any comment.

The ACC has listed it as a money-laundering case and is working on bringing the money back with the help of the Financial Intelligence Unit of Turkey. The decision to bring back the money was taken in a meeting of the Banks and Financial Institutions Division of the Ministry of Finance. The Bangladesh Bank wrote a letter to the Financial Intelligence Unit of Turkey in this connection through the Egmont Secured Web (ESW) on October 10.

About this, Bangladesh Bank Executive Director Shuvankar Shaha told The Report, “An incident of money-laundering involving Tk 2.0 crore happened at the Shilpa Bhaban branch of the Sonali Bank. A criminal case has been filed in this connection with the Motijheel police station. Besides, the ACC is investigating the case. And we are working closely with the Financial Intelligence Unit of Turkey for bringing back the money. We hope the issue will be solved very soon.”

Ends/ 04, 2016

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