No financial loss to bank in money laundering case: OBC

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New Delhi, Oct 16: Oriental Bank of Commerce on Friday said it has not suffered any financial loss with regard to the alleged Rs 557 crore money laundering case reported by Enforcement Directorate.

"All these transactions are old between 2006-10 and accounts of 11 entities were closed during 2009-10. Since these were current accounts and there was no lending done against these so there is no financial implication on the bank," OBC executive director Suresh N Patel said."

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The bank had informed the Reserve Bank of India about the issue, he said.

Yesterday, the Enforcement Directorate reported yet another trade-based money laundering case worth over Rs 550 crore perpetrated by allegedly using banking channels of nine major national and international banks, with illegal remittances being sent to Hong Kong and China.

The agency has also arrested a Ghaziabad-based foreign exchange operator for sending these illegal remittances to these foreign locations.

The case was busted after the agency got leads from an accused in the Bank of Baroda money laundering case, where suspicious remittances of an estimated Rs 6,000 crore came to light recently and which is being probed by multiple agencies including CBI, SFIO, Income Tax department and the ED.

A fresh FIR was lodged in connection with this case registered under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

"The ED has arrested Manish Jain, operating a forex firm in Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh, last night for allegedly depositing and remitting Rs 505 crore between 2006 and 2010 from the Rajpur branch of OBC in an illegal manner against imports that "never took place."

These remittances made through 66 accounts in the said OBC branch, the ED said, were subsequently sent to an HSBC bank branch in Hong Kong and then to China in return for settling dues of various importers in India with Chinese suppliers.

On the agency's trade-based money laundering radar, where accused traders evade customs duties and taxes to generate slush funds, are seven other banks in the national capital region - ING Vysya, ICICI, Kotak Mahindra, Indusind, Dhanlaxmi Bank, YES bank and DCB bank which the agency believes have been "misused" by Jain and others to perpetrate this fraud.

PTI

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