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Manila bank threatens to sue Bangladesh central bank officials over $81m heist

Sayeed Muhammad

Just day after Bangladesh confirmed that it would sue a Philippines bank over the 2016 Bangladesh Bank (BB) reserve account heist, Manila-based Rizal Commercial Bank Corp (RCBC) has threatened counter measures.The RCBC in a press statement issued on Thursday said it was mulling legal actions against BB officials, reports The Philippine Daily Inquirer.It accused Dhaka officials of maligning the bank and using it as a “scapegoat” over one of the world’s biggest cyber heists.On Wednesday, the central bank said it has decided to file a lawsuit in New York against RCBC over its role in the reserve theft. The Federal Reserve Bank  of New York and SWIFT will be parties to the lawsuit, said BB Deputy Governor Abu Hena Mohd Razee Hassan.The RCBC, which had earlier accused BB of covering up its own negligence, said it will not allow any further efforts to ‘malign’ them.“RCBC has had it and will consider a lawsuit against Bangladesh Central Bank (BB) officials for claiming the bank had a hand in the $81M cyberheist two years ago,” the Daily Inquirer report said quoting the bank’s statement.The bank, which had been slapped a $20-million fine by Philippines authorities, claimed that various probe reports, including the one conducted by Bangladesh, “indicate an inside job.”“BB and Dhaka officials refuse to release their findings to hide from the Bangladeshi public what could very well be the involvement of its own officials who may have helped loot their money deposited with the New York Federal Reserve,” the statement reads.Accusing BB of ‘perpetuating the cover up’, RCBC said they were being used as a scapegoat “to keep their people in dark.”

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