‘Bangladesh identifies 20 foreigners in $ 101 mn heist’

By: |
Dhaka | April 18, 2016 7:40 PM

Bangladesh today identified at least 20 foreigners from China, Sri Lanka and the Philippines for their alleged involvement in the $ 101 million cyber heist from the nation's foreign reserves, in one of the world's biggest ever bank theft that embarrassed the government.

The Criminal Investigation Department's (CID) investigation also found evidence of negligence by Bangladesh Bank officials, according to CID Additional Deputy Inspector General Shah Alam. (Reuters)The Criminal Investigation Department’s (CID) investigation also found evidence of negligence by Bangladesh Bank officials, according to CID Additional Deputy Inspector General Shah Alam. (Reuters)

Bangladesh today identified at least 20 foreigners from China, Sri Lanka and the Philippines for their alleged involvement in the $ 101 million cyber heist from the nation’s foreign reserves, in one of the world’s biggest ever bank theft that embarrassed the government.

The Criminal Investigation Department’s (CID) investigation also found evidence of negligence by Bangladesh Bank officials, according to CID Additional Deputy Inspector General Shah Alam.

“The names of 20 Filipino, Sri Lankan and Chinese nationals came up during our official visits to the countries regarding the heist. We might again visit the countries but we cannot disclose the names right now for the sake of the investigation,” Alam told reporters here.

A 16-member team of the CID returned after their visit to the Philippines and Sri Lanka to collect information on the heist, adding that details on the outcome of the visit will be made public later on, Alam was quoted as saying by Dhaka Tribune.

CID said they do not want to disclose information whether any Bangladeshis are involved in the reserve heist incident.

On the negligence of central bank officials, the CID official said investigators are now trying to find out whether it was out of criminal intent or because of their incompetence.

The hacking took place on the night of February 4, using information stolen through the malware, which sent a total of 35 transfer orders to the New York’s Federal Reserve Bank where the Bangladesh’s central bank has an account.

Bangladesh last month said that unknown hackers had stolen $ 101 million of which $ 81 million entered the Philippines and the rest went to Sri Lanka to be used in casino business.

Bangladesh central bank governor Atiur Rahman, his two deputies and the country’s top banking bureaucrat lost their jobs following the theft that has raised serious questions over the safety of its foreign exchange reserves of over $ 27 billion.

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