Net widens in BancABC P20m "heist"


Investigators following the trail of more than P20 million allegedly diverted from BancABC’s New York account, have asked the High Court to seize even more property belonging to the suspect and related parties in the matter.

The State believes that starting from October 9 last year, Trevor Thomo Boiteto, a former money market dealer at the bank, diverted a sum of about US$2.1 million, shortly after the sum had been transferred from another foreign currency account in South Africa. He then allegedly proceeded to shuffle the funds between different accounts, covering his tracks with falsified orders, before crediting accounts including Fleming Asset Management and Boldmark Engineering.

In March, Lobatse High Court judge, Justice Reuben Lekorwe approved the freezing of seven accounts linked to the matter holding different currencies including US dollars and Rands. He also ruled that property, including two vehicles, involved in the suspected money laundering case be seized pending finalisation of proceedings for civil forfeiture.

According to documents made available, investigators are now going after property in Palapye and Serowe that the former bank employee is linked to. The investigators have applied to Lekorwe under the Proceeds and Instruments of Crime Act.

They also want the court to seize a Komatsu backhoe loader, Toyota ToyoAce, Audi A3 and a sum of P2.2 million held in a law firm’s trust account.

Court filings show that the Directorate of Public Prosecutions is pursuing all possible links, transactions, assets and accounts where the original funds allegedly diverted from BancABC could have wound up. The matter involves more than 10 individuals and companies which investigators claim have connections to the diverted funds.

“I state that this property is a proceed of serious crime-related activity of money laundering,” reads a deposition by investigating officer, Segokgo Morebudi.

The case against Boiteto stems from a transaction on October 9, 2018 last year when he allegedly misappropriated about US$2.1 million. In subsequent transactions, Boiteto is alleged to have moved the funds around, earning interest, and paying them into various other companies with which he has links.

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