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RM24 million fraud: Mastermind held. Second such case involving separate bank branches
Published on: Tuesday, June 18, 2024
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RM24 million fraud: Mastermind held. Second such case involving separate bank branches
The women suspects who were charged in the peninsula in the RM2m bribery case involving Felda land in Melaka.
Kuala Lumpur: A man suspected of masterminding a syndicate involved in the fraudulent withdrawal of RM24.2 million from several fixed deposit was arrested in Sabah on Friday. 

It followed the detention of a woman who was an employee of a bank in Kota Kinabalu on June 13.

Bukit Aman Commercial Crime Investigation Department (JSJK) Director Datuk Seri Mohamed Ramli Yoosuf said the man was believed to be directly involved in the case.

Altogether, five people, including two bank officers, have been arrested for their alleged involvement in the syndicate. 

Ramli

Ramli said police had received four reports earlier this month about suspicious withdrawals.

He said the reports were lodged by victims (account holders) and bank staff in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, alleging cash withdrawals in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, involving fixed deposit accounts.

“We believe more people are involved in this criminal syndicate which has led to the unauthorised withdrawal of money from fixed deposit accounts,” he said.

Ramli said that investigations revealed the involvement of syndicate members from within and outside the bank, who colluded in facilitating the unauthorised withdrawals.

The case is being investigated under Section 420 of the Penal Code, and the authorities are working to track down other individuals involved. 

It is believed to be the second such case that involved separate Sabah bank branches.

Earlier, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission remanded eight people in Kuala Lumpur and Sabah in a RM2 million bribery case involving a syndicate selling land belonging to the Federal Land Development Authority (Felda) in Melaka.

A source at MACC said those arrested in Kuala Lumpur comprised three brokers and two members of the public, while those in Sabah comprised two bank officers and a company director, all aged from their 20s to 50s.

Magistrate Lili Marisqa Khalizan issued a seven-day remand order until June 17 for the five male suspects at the Kuala Lumpur magistrates’ court.

In Kota Kinabalu, Magistrate Wan Farrah Afriza Wan Ghazali issued a six-day remand order until June 16 for three suspects – two women and a man.

According to the source, the three brokers and the company director, with the help of the two members of the public acting as middlemen, gave almost RM2 million in bribes to two bank officers in return for the approval of bank accounts apparently opened under Felda.

He said the bank accounts were opened under Felda’s name so buyers would assume that the land deals were genuine Felda deals, and they would make their payments to the said accounts.

“The action of these bank officers in cahoots with the syndicate caused the sale of 260ha of Felda land worth RM400 million in Bukit Katil, Melaka, in 2023,” the source said.

The source said that following the arrests, MACC froze almost 200 bank accounts belonging to individuals and companies, totalling over RM28 million.

Zamri Zainul Abidin, the director of MACC’s anti-money laundering division, confirmed the arrests.

He said the case is being investigated under Section 16(a)(A) of the MACC Act 2009, pertaining to the acceptance of gratification, and the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001.

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