Bangladesh's central bank is getting closer to recover a portion of its stolen $81 million fund.
Philippine Anti Money Laundering Council (AMLC) Executive Director Julia Bacay-Abad has said a lower court in Manila had already accepted its petition for civil forfeiture filed last May.
In one of the biggest cyber heists in history, hackers stole $81 million from the Bangladesh Bank's account at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York on February 4.
AMLC filed the case against casino junket operator Kim Wong and his Eastern Hawaii Leisure Co Ltd, Centurytex Trading, Rizal Commercial Banking Corp, and Philippine National Bank.
The forfeiture order covers funds amounting to about $15 million turned over by Wong to the AMLC in April and May, Abad explained, reports The Philippine Star.
She said Bangladesh should now file a third party claim so the funds currently kept at the vault of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) would finally be released.
Under the rule on civil forfeiture, any person or party who has a claim on the amount forfeited should file a verified petition with the same court that rendered the order of forfeiture.
During one of the hearings at the Senate, Abad said AMLC is still looking for around $21 million as it already accounted for about $60 million. These included the $15 million turned over by Wong, the $28 million with Solaire Casino, and the $17 million allegedly with Philrem Services Corp.
Both the BSP and the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee have completed their investigation into the heist.