Bangladesh Bank heist probe report suffers mother of all delays
If you thought the trains in London were slow then spare a thought for Bangladesh Bank’s heist probe report, which has been delayed a staggering 25 times.
Cast your mind back to March 2016, when a $101 million cyber heist had central bank officials from Bangladesh to New York quarrelling over what may be one of the biggest and boldest bank raids in history.
At that time, Bangladesh Bank said the total was “wrongly transmitted”, of which $20 million went to a Sri Lankan bank. The fallout led to quarrels and questions, with Swift rejecting allegations made by the bank and Bangladesh Police’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID) officials that it was to blame.
In November 2016, Bangladesh’s central bank said it was hoping to get back $30 million from the theft.
However, this week, and according to bdnews24, police investigating the cyber heist have failed to submit a report to court for the 25th time since the case was started last year.
A Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate fixed 29 August as a new deadline for submission of the court report. But bdnews24 says a CID additional superintendent failed to submit the report.
A probe panel formed by the Bangladesh Bank, headed by former governor Mohammed Farashuddin, submitted its report to the finance ministry on 30 May last year.
But the nation’s Finance Minister did not release the committee’s findings “despite repeated pledges to do so”.
About $15 million of the stolen reserves that made it to Manila-based Rizal Commercial Banking Corp were returned to Bangladesh, but the remainder of the money has not been found.
Whether this case will ever be concluded, remains to be seen.