Bangladesh Bank, RCBC battle on $81-M cyberheist
MANILA, Philippines – Cyberheist victim Bank of Bangladesh and Yuchengco-led Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. are in a legal battle in the US in relation with the $81 million money laundering scandal in 2016.
While it had not been officially notified, RCBC said in a press statement on Friday that it’s aware that a complaint had been filed against it by Bank of Bangladesh. RCBC added that it had engaged the US law firm of Quinn Emanuel for its defense in this matter.
RCBC’s lead attorney on the case, Tai-Heng Cheng, a partner at the firm’s New York office said: “This is nothing more than a thinly veiled PR (public relations) campaign disguised as a lawsuit. Based on what we have heard this suit is completely baseless. If the Bank of Bangladesh was serious about recovering the money, they would have pursued their claims three years ago and not wait until days before the statute of limitations.
“Not only are the allegations false, they don’t have the right to file here since none of the defendants are in the US,” Cheng also said.
In 2016, $81 million in dirty money stolen by hackers from Bank of Bangladesh slipped into RCBC’s branch on Jupiter St. in Makati City, quickly withdrawn, and eventually laundered through in local casinos.
Cheng said the defense panel would show that this lawsuit was “nothing more than a political stunt by the Bangladesh Bank to try to shift blame from themselves to RCBC.”
“A review of the facts shows that Bangladesh Bank’s errors, omissions, and lapses in security protocols are the cause of its loss. We believe it is telling that they have concealed information from their own investigation and despite admitting their own culpability, continue to try to blame others,” the legal counsel said.
“RCBC had nothing to do with the theft of the funds and has cooperated fully with every investigation into the matter. This suit is nothing more than a blatant attempt by Bangladesh Bank to shift blame and cover up their own liability,” he added. /kga
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