Bangladesh Bank cannot shirk responsibility of money laundering, the court said during the hearing
The High Court (HC) has barred 25 people, including Lilavati Haldar, mother of Prashant Kumar Haldar alias PK Halder, former managing director of NRB Global Bank, from leaving the country in the aftermath of his financial scams.
A High Court bench of Justices Md Nazrul Islam Talukder and Ahmed Sohel passed the order on Tuesday.
During the hearing, the High Court said, 'Hundreds of crores taka are being smuggled abroad, what is Bangladesh Bank doing? Why are they (Bangladesh Bank) not doing anything in the face of these offenses? They go to the office and just sit there. This inaction is unacceptable.
Bangladesh Bank cannot shirk responsibility when it comes to money laundering, the court also said.
The court said the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) could interrogate the Bangladesh Bank, if necessary.
The 24 other relatives and accomplices of PK Haldar are: SK Sur, Harunur Rashid, Uzzal Kumar Nandi, Sami Huda, Amitabh Adhikari, Avantika Baral, Shamima, Runa, NI Khan, Sukumar Mridha, Anindita Mridha, Tapan Dey, Swapan Kumar Mistry, Abhijit Chowdhury, Rajib Som, Irfanuddin Ahmed Chowdhury, Angan Mohan Roy, Nang Chou Mong, Nizamul Ahsan, Manik Lal Samaddar, Sohel Shams, Mahbub Musa, AQ Siddiqui and Moazzem Hossain.
ACC lawyer Khurshid Alam Khan told reporters, ''Five people, including the family of the former chief justice, a former ambassador and a former official of Dhaka University, have submitted written statements to the High Court seeking refund of money deposited in International Leasing & Financial Services Ltd (ILFSL).''
In their statement, the five depositors said they had sought the High Court order to prevent these 25 people from going overseas.
The court subsequently barred these 25 individuals from travelling overseas without its permission.
They are as follows: Dr Nasheed Kamal, daughter of former Chief Justice Mostafa Kamal; former ambassador Raziul Hasan; Samia Binte Mahbub; Khaled Mansoor Trust official, Tariqul Islam; and former director of Dhaka University's Physical Education Center, freedom fighter Shawkatur Rahman.
On 21 January last year, in response to a petition filed by several investors over the siphoning of Tk3,500 crore, the HC ordered the seizure of bank accounts and passports of 19 accused, including ILFSL director Halder.
The 19 others are either directors of the ILFSL or family members or friends of PK Halder.
PK Halder, also former ILFSL director fled the country after allegedly embezzling and laundering Tk11,000 crore from various financial institutions.
According to the ACC investigation, Halder and his accomplices misappropriated around Tk3,500 crore from ILFSL, Tk2,200 crore from FAS Finance, Tk2,500 crore from Reliance Finance, and around Tk3,000 crore from People's Leasing.
The ACC investigation also revealed that PK Halder has siphoned Tk1,000 crore to Canada, Singapore and India,.
On January 8, the ACC filed a case against PK Halder over amassing Tk275 crore in illegal wealth. Investigation into that charge is currently ongoing.
A Dhaka court subsequently ordered seizure of two Dhanmandi flats and around six acres of land belonging to PK Halder.
As he has not returned home despite being authorized by the court, the ACC has sought the support of Interpol to arrest and return absconding fugitive PK Halder.