It may take 3yrs to settle money heist case in NY court: BB lawyer
Dhaka: It may take 3 years to settle the case filed by the Bangladesh Bank with a New York court to recover its stolen money from different organisations and individuals involved in the cyber heist, said central bank lawyer Ajmalul Hossain, reports the UNB.
He made the remark while briefing reporters at the central bank about the case filed with the US District Court for the Southern District of New York on January 31.
Bangladesh Bank deputy governor Abu Hena Razee Hasan also spoke on the occasion.
He said a total of 7 organisations, including Philippines’ Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC), some casinos and also 40 individuals, including 25 unnamed persons of different countries, were made accused in the “massive and multi-year conspiracy” to steal its money.
Among the 15 people whose names were mentioned in the case include 3 Chinese nationals, he said.
Ajmalul Hossain noted that in the case the Bangladesh Bank has made a claim of its unrecovered $66 million plus its interests and also the expenses to be made for running the case.
He said Tk 3 crore has so far been spent by the Bangladesh Bank on the case and the first hearing on it is likely to be held within the next 6 months.
He also informed that the US Federal Reserve will extend its full support to the Bangladesh Bank to run the case as there was an agreement signed between the two sides before filing the case.
He also said SWIFT, the international money transfer network, also assured Bangladesh Bank of providing all the necessary cooperation in recovering the stolen money.
International robbers stole $101 million from the Bangladesh Bank account with the Federal Reserve Bank through fraudulent instructions against their target of about $1 billion in February 2016.
Although some $20 million was recovered from a Sri Lankan bank, $81 million, which landed in Manila-based RCBC, could not be recovered.
Most of the money transferred to the Philippines went to four personal accounts, held by individuals.
The Federal Reserve Bank blocked the remaining 30 transactions, amounting to $850 million, due to suspicions raised by a misspelled instruction.
Of the amount, $81 million was wired to an RCBC branch in Manila, from where it disappeared into the casino industry in the Philippines. The rest $20 million made its way to Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka sent back the entire sum immediately after the heist was exposed while the Philippines returned $14.54 million in November 2016 -- meaning $66.46 million is yet to be retrieved.