At least 20 shell corporations used to embezzle the funds
During interrogation by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), the board of directors of FAS Finance and Investment Ltd admitted to embezzling Tk1300 crore, including Tk700 crore embezzled by Managing director (MD) Rasel Shahriar through signature forgery.
On Wednesday, a team led by ACC deputy director Gulshan Anwar Pradhan interrogated FAS Directors Uzzal Kumar Nandi, Anjan Kumar Roy, Birendra Som and Mohammad Mostafa, and MD Russell Shahriar. The questioning went on for two hours, during which they admitted to embezzling the money and sending it to PK Halder.
So far, the ACC has questioned a total 22 current and former FAS personnel.
Prashant Kumar Halder alias PK Halder and his associates misappropriated a total of around Tk7,000 crore from three finance and leasing companies through the use of shell corporations (organizations that exist only on paper), according to the ACC.
Loans to the shell corporations were approved without mortgages or other securities, making the money impossible to recover, the commission has found.
A top official of the commission, requesting anonymity, told Dhaka Tribune that the FAS top officials admitted to their crimes without hesitation when presented with documents unearthed by the ACC during its investigation.
The inquiry team will soon file a case against the FAS top officials and other associates of PK Halder, the official added.
How the money was embezzled from FAS finance
According to the ACC report, PK Halder and his associates bought a controlling stake in FAS Finance at the end of 2014. In subsequent years, PK Halder and his partners terminated staff members of the institution and replaced them.
Uzzal Kumar Nandi, one of PK Halder’s closest associates, appointed all members of the board of directors of FAS Finance. Md Siddique and Jahangir, both friends and business partners of PK Halder, took all responsibility for monitoring the institution, the report said.
All the appointments were made at the directive of PK Halder. Whenever he asked for a loan to be given to a particular organization, the board members and managing director would approve it without due diligence.
In this way, PK took Tk1300 crore from FAS Finance.
The 20 shell companies used by PK Halder to embezzle funds from FAS Finance are: RB Enterprise, Doa Shipping Ltd, Imar Enterprise, G&G Enterprise, Newtech Enterprise, Nutrical Ltd, SA Enterprise, Sukhada Properties Ltd, Nature Enterprise Ltd, Wintel International Ltd, Barna, Sandwip Corporation, Annan Chemical Industries Ltd, NB Trading, Hal International Ltd, Kanika Enterprise, MarineTrust Ltd, Moon Enterprise, MTB Marine Ltd, and P&L International Ltd.