MONEY LAUNDERING

2 MPs, 20 others barred from leaving country

Ahammad Foyez | Published: 16:52, Oct 23,2019 | Updated: 00:13, Oct 24,2019

 
 

Anti-Corruption Commission

The Anti-Corruption Commission on Wednesday imposed a ban on foreign travel of 22 people consisting mostly of leaders of ruling Awami League and its fronts, including members of parliament Nurunnabi Chowdhury and Shamsul Hoque Chowdhury.

The travel ban was imposed after primary evidence was found that they were involved in money laundering and were trying to leave the country, said the commission’s public relations officer Pranab Kumar Bhattacharjee.

Names of the 22 people came under ACC scanner after it recently launched inquiries following the government’s crackdown against illegal casinos and money making through unlawful means.

The rest 20 are controversial contractors — SM Golam Kibria Shamim, suspended Juba League leader Khaled Mahmud Bhuiyan, suspended Juba League Dhaka South City unit president Ismail Hossain Chowdhury Samrat, expelled Juba League leader Enamul Haque Arman, Dhaka North City Corporation’s ward councillor and Mohammadpur unit Awami League general secretary Habibur Rahman Mizan, suspended Juba League office secretary Kazi Anisur Rahman and his wife Sumi Rahman, Dhaka South City Corporation ward councillor and removed Arambagh Krira Sangha chief AKM Mominul Haque Sayeed, ruling Awami League’s Gandaria thana unit vice-president Enamul Haque Enu and its joint general secretary Rupan Bhuiyan, Mohammedan Sporting Club director-in-charge Lokman Hossain Bhuiyan, his wife Nabila Lokman, Samrat’s associates Jakir Hossain and Muhammad Shafiqul Islam, former Public Works Department chief engineer Mohammad Rafiqul Islam and its current additional chief engineer M Abdul Hye, Japan-Bangladesh Security  Printing and Papers Limited director Selim Pradhan, Dhaka Wonders Club employee Abul Kalam Azad, businessmen M Shafiqul Islam and Proshanta Kumar Halder.

Anti-Corruption Commission director Sayed Iqbal Hossain sent a letter to the special branch of police to take necessary steps to prevent their foreign travel.

In his letter Iqbal said that the commission found their involvement in money laundering inside the country and abroad.

It said that the officials informed that they are now trying the leave the country.     

Most of the 22 people have already been arrested by law enforcement agencies for their alleged involvement in the illegal casino businesses and amassing money through other illegal ways.

The National Board of Revenue also froze banks accounts of some of them while a search is on for bank information of some others.

Following the allegations of involvement in different irregularities, AL front body Awami Juba League chairman Omar Faruk Chowdhury and Awami Swechchhasebak League president Molla Md Abu Kawsar were removed from the posts.

The Anti-Corruption Commission also filed four cases against them in this connection.

On Wednesday, the Anti-Corruption Commission filed two cases against Enamul Haque Enu, Rupan Bhuiyan and two Enam’s close associates — Harunur Rashid and Abul Kalam — for their alleged illegal wealth accumulation.

On Tuesday, the commission filed two cases against GK Shamim, his mother and Khaled Mahmud for their alleged involvement accumulation of illegal wealth.

The Rapid Action Battalion also filed several cases against the arrested people under Money Laundering Prevention Act 2012 and the Arms Act 1878.

While talking to journalist at his ministry office, home minister Asaduzzaman Khan on Wednesday said the drive against casinos and other illegal activities would be continued and many big-shot would be brought under justice.

On September 30, the commission launched inquiries to detect the illegal wealth of the people involved in the unauthorised casino operations and other illegal businesses.

The commission in an emergency meeting on the day assigned its director Sayed Iqbal Hossain as the inquiry officer and its director general Sayeed Mahbub Khan as the inquiry supervisor.

During the ongoing crackdown against corruption and illegal money generation since September 18, so far 274 people, mostly leaders and activists of the Awami League and its associate and front bodies, were arrested from different parts of the country.

Of them, 221 were arrested from Dhaka and 53 from outside of Dhaka.

During the time law enforcers conducted 47 drives at 22 sporting and recreation clubs, five bars, three spas and other places including residences and offices of Awami League and pro-Awami league organisation leaders.

According to media reports, there were 60 illegal casinos in operation in the capital until recently.

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