Bangladesh Bank has decided to lodge a case against Philippines’ Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) within three months if they do not return the remaining money that was stolen from the central bank’s foreign reserve account back in 2016.
Abu Hena Mohammad Razi Hasan, deputy governor of Bangladesh Bank, said the above during a press briefing at the bank’s headquarters on Wednesday afternoon.
From the $81 million that was stolen, $66.46 million is yet to be retrieved, he said.
He added: “We have already traced $50 million which is still going through the court proceedings [in the Philippines]. However, the rest still remains traceless.
“If RCBC wants to negotiate within these three months, they can. Otherwise, we will go ahead with the case.”
He further said: “We are talking to the US Federal Reserve Bank and Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) to file a tripartisan case against RCBC in the US. If they decline to help, we will move forward on our own.”
On November 10 last year, Philippines had sent back $14 million to Bangladesh Bank following a court order, which was retrieved mostly from a Manila casino junket operator.
Prior to that, in February 2016, Bangladesh received $70,000 from Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) of Manila.
On February 4, 2016, unidentified hackers stole a total of $101 million from Bangladesh Bank’s account at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, using fraudulent orders on the SWIFT payments system.
Of the amount, $20 million was transferred to Sri Lanka which was stopped. But the $81 million sent to accounts at Manila-based RCBC had disappeared into the casino industry in the Philippines.