PK Halder: Hearing on charge framing 8 Sept

PK HalderFile photo

Hearing is on regarding framing of charges against 14 people including former Global Islami Bank managing director Prashanta Kumar Halder in a case filed over amassing assets from unknown sources and money laundering

The court has fixed 8 September for the next hearing.

Dhaka special judge court-10 judge Mohammad Nazrul Islam set the date on Monday.

Anti-Corruption Commission public prosecutor Mir Ahmed Ali confirmed this to Prothom Alo.

He said he placed arguments in favour of framing charges against the accused including PK Halder. Later, the lawyers held a hearing in favour of the accused. As the hearing is not completed, the court set a new date for framing charges.

Prior to the hearing, PK Halder’s cousin Shankha Bepari, close associates Sukumar Mridha, Anindita Mridha and Abantika Baral were produced before the court.

Ten of the accused including PK Halder himself are absconding in this case. Other absconding accused include PK Halder’s mother Lilabati Halder, brother Pritish Kumar Halder, his associates Amitabh Adhikari, Purnima Rani Halder, Uttam Kumar Mistri, Razib Shome, Subrata Das, Ananga Mohan Roy and Swapan Kumar Mistri.

Court sources said ACC in last January submitted charge sheet against 14 people in this case including PK Halder, his mother, brother and close relatives in this case.

According to the charge sheet filed by ACC, PK Halder bought plots, flats and hotels worth Tk 9.33 billion at different places across country including Dhaka, Narayanganj and Narsingdi with or without providing his correct identity. Besides, he has siphoned off about Tk 800 million to Canada.

ACC says, PK Halder, who came from a lower middle class family of Pirojpur district, accumulated huge amount of assets within just 10 years (2009-2019). All of his legal earnings stands at Tk 120 million only.

He took loans of Tk 35 billion from four financial institutions— International Leasing and Financial Services Limited, People’s Leasing and Financial Services, FAS Finance and Investment Limited and Bangladesh Industrial Finance Company (BIFC).

At first, he started controlling these institutions through purchasing shares and took loans later. This financial scam came to fore at the beginning of 2020, months after the departure of PK Halder from the country as he fled the country towards the end of 2019.

Quoting Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit (BFIU) and Canadian Financial Intelligence Unit, ACC report says, PK Halder siphoned off more than 11.7 million (1,711,164) Canadian dollars to his brother Pritish Halder in between 2012 to 2020.

Enforcement Directorate (ED), India's financial corruption investigation agency, arrested PK Halder from West Bengal's North Chabbish Pargana on last 14 May. They also arrested five associates of PK Halder.

Before the arrest, the ED found many assets including PK Halder's luxury house in different parts of the state. He is under trial there.

On 7 June, the ED told the court that they had found 88 bank accounts of PK Haldar and his associates in various parts of India including West Bengal. The ED also told the court that PK Halder and his associates received assets worth Rs 3 billion.