'Inexperienced' CID grappling with investigation into hack theft of Bangladesh Bank reserves

The Federal Bureau of Investigation of the US is helping CID in solving the case.

An FBI official met the CID investigators in Dhaka on Sunday.

"They (FBI) have one puzzle, we have another. The objective is to combine them," CID Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Shah Alam told reporters after the meeting.

The investigators say they are jousting to crack the case because never before have they probed fraud of such massive proprotion.

Bangladesh Bank lost $101 million from its account with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in early February.

After being put on the job, CID said it would consult FBI. The US also agreed to provide help.

Alam said they discussed several issues related to the investigation during the meeting with the FBI representative.

"Our interest is in recovering the money, while their interest is to identify those who can commit such a crime," he said.

The investigation aims at finding who made profits from the heist, he added.

The hackers sent a number of payment instructions to the US bank using SWIFT code.

Transfer of $20 million to Sri Lanka was stopped but $81 million found its way to and beyond the Philippines.

Alam said the CID were also taking help from Interpol, SWIFT, and several other organisations.

Bangladesh Bank initiated the case last Tuesday, 40 days after the heist, after Atiur Rahman resigned as its governor facing immense pressure.

CID’s DIG Saiful Islam said, "The transfer could be stopped and it would be easier to identify the wrongdoers if the case was started on the day of the incident or the following day."

The CID investigators are regularly visiting the Bangladesh Bank.

They spoke to central bank officials and gathered evidence on Sunday.

DIG Islam said they found negligence of central bank officials in the heist.

"No-one could be identified in partcular," he added.

The Filipino media said most of the stolen funds was pulled out of the banking channel through the country's casinos.

Islam did not rule out the possibility to recover the money.

"But it needs a lot of time," he added.

Related posts