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Fraud at Kingdom

Staff Writer

IN yet another suspected bank fraud, Kingdom Bank has been swindled of $700 million in a scam involving bank staff, the Zimbabwe Independent can reveal.

ana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif”>The police have since arrested eight people, including an employee at the bank, in connection with the fraud that has exposed weaknesses in the Homelink scheme.

The bank confirmed the theft in a statement yesterday and referred further questions to the police.

“Kingdom Bank can confirm that a fraud was uncovered at the end of July 2004 which involves an equivalent of $700 million,” the bank said. “One member of staff and seven members of the public have been arrested in connection with the fraud. The CID is in charge of the investigation, and we refer all enquires to their offices,” the bank said.

The Independent learnt this week that a staffer at the bank connived with seven others to misrepresent that £70 000 had been sent to the alleged fraudsters through the Homelink scheme. The fraudsters had forged identity documents, which they used to access the funds.

The bank then paid out $700 million to the alleged fraudsters who went on a shopping spree at a wholesaler in Msasa. Members of the group are said to have gone to a resort in Binga where they had a spendfest before they were arrested.

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