Kochi: As many as 19 persons from Kerala has been named accused swindling Rs 1,200 crore from banks in United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Officials of National Bank of Ras Al-Khaimah came to Kochi central police station on Thursday to give their statement. The officials will give statements and documents regarding cases investigated by the crime branch in the coming days.
Investigations have been initiated in Kerala against 46 companies that were based in UAE. It is learned that around 100 companies including those owned by Malayalis are involved in the swindling. If the other companies are taken into account, the total amount swindled will cross Rs 2,000 crore, the bank officials said.
The consortium of banks in UAE said that Rs 20,000 crore was swindled from emirates including Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi during 2013-17. The amount was smuggled to several countries including India. Only a portion of this amount reached Kerala.
The accused first created companies in UAE. Showing the documents of these companies, they procured loans from various banks before absconding, said Prince Subrahmanyan, the power of attorney in Kerala for the banks.
The accused were able to procure such a huge amount as different persons took loans from different banks. The companies, their assets and stocks disappeared along with the accused, he added.
Meticulous planning and hawala help
The accused defrauded the huge amount after meticulous planning. It is learned that the culprits are actual businessmen. They exaggerated the transactions and submitted the same documents to procure loans from different banks and swindle the huge sum of money, the consultant for the banks told Mathrubhumi.com.
The accused gains the trust of the banks by properly paying up loans taken earlier. Later, they submitted forged documents to procure new multiple short term loans. By the time the banks realized the crime and registered cases, the defrauders sold the company’s assets and left the country.
The accused did not transfer the large sums they gained through loans and sale of assets and withdrew it themselves. This indicates that the amount was brought to other places including Kerala using hawala agents.
The swindling took place during 2013 and 2017. Even though the banks have been trying to initiate legal action in Kerala, technical problems as the crime took place in UAE delayed it. Meanwhile, efforts are on to reach a compromise on the case.
However, the defrauders allege that legal action can’t be taken against them in India. Some have even approached the court against the banks.