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September 24, 2013

A case of looted money nailed by FIA but all accused have fled

National

A
APP
September 24, 2013

ISLAMABAD: The first big money laundering case with Rs250 million alleged “proceeds of crime” having been transmitted abroad has been unearthed by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) during the present government, and the beneficiary, who pocketed the huge ill-gotten money, worked as director to the commerce minister in the previous regime.
The elaborate FIA inquiry, a copy of which is available with ‘The News’, gives graphic details of the money trail and how the proceeds were sent to one country from where they were transmitted to different destinations to be deposited in five accounts in Dubai, Switzerland, the US and Britain.
The FIA conducted the inquiry into the Rs1.27 billion fraudulent disbursement of subsidies to bogus private companies through fabricated claims and backdated cheques by the Trade Development Authority Pakistan (TDAP) under the Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF) 2009-2012. It was ordered by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif last month after a three-member committee of the commerce ministry recommended criminal proceedings against the guilty officials of the TDAP.
The report said that from the received “proceeds of crime”, accused Farhan Ahmed Junejo transferred an amount of about Rs250 million to Dubai through Hawala/Hundi in his account No.18498715201 (IBAN-AE67-0440-0000-1849-8715-201) titled Farhan Ahmed Junejo 6 Warner Close Harlington Middlesex Postal/Zip Code UB3 5LG United Kingdom, maintained with Standard Chartered Bank (SCB), Dubai Branch, which was opened in the first quarter of 2011 through Associate Director Private Banking Division, SCB, located at 6th Floor Dubai International Finance Centre (DFIC), Dubai.
Six amounts totaling Rs81,741,400 or UAE Dirhams 34,15,320 were sent in the second half of 2011 to Exchange Co in Dubai from where these were deposited in account No.18498715201 (IBAN-AE67-0440-0000-1849-8715-201), maintained with the SCB Dubai.
These included Rs22,544,400 (Dirhams 956,372) sent

on June 13; Rs15,492,000 (Dirhams 655,270) transmitted on June 25; $150,000 equal to Rs12,915,000 (Dirhams 546,320) sent on July 9; Rs3,790,000 (Dirhams 159,134) transmitted on August 15; Rs2m (Dirhams 79,365) sent on September 26; and Rs25m (Dirhams 1,018,859) on December 15.
Another two huge amounts totaling Rs35 million or $418,579 were also sent in the year 2012 to the Exchange Co in Dubai from where these were transmitted by telegraphic transfer (TT) through Wall Street Exchange Centre, LCC Dubai, UAE, with the beneficiary being Mrs Shameem Nabi Sher having account in Geneva, Switzerland. Of them, an amount of Rs20 million or $215,079 was sent to Dubai on February 2, and a sum of Rs15,000,000 or $203,500 transmitted on February 8.
Again, an amount of Rs919,000 or $10,000 was sent to Exchange Co in Dubai from where it was transferred by TT through Wall Street Exchange Centre LLC Dubai with the beneficiary being Rehan Junejo in the US.
Another amount of Rs8,700,000 or British Pound 60,000 was transmitted to Exchange Co in Dubai from where it was transferred by TT through Wall Street Exchange Centre LLC Dubai with the beneficiary being Mrs Benish N Qureshi account in UK.
An amount of Rs11,898,655 or Dirhams 476,900 was also sent to Exchange Co in Dubai from where it was deposited in account No.18498715201 (IBAN-AE67-0440-0000-1849-8715-201) of Farhan Junejo with the SCB Dubai.
The FIA report gives details of the beneficiaries of these proceeds. It said Shameem Nabi Sher is the mother of Farhan Junejo, who has her account in Geneva Switzerland, Credit Bank AGRICOL General while Mrs Benish N Qureshi is his wife, who has the accounts numbers GB54NWBK60104315184749 and GB69RBOS60954130699174, Natwest Bank 6 Cold Harbour Lan Hayes Middlesex, UB33EL London.
Rehan Junejo is the brother of Farhan Junejo having his account with the Bank of America in the US. Mrs Afshan Junejo is the sister of Farhan Junenjo, who has her account in the US. Farhan Juneno and his wife have joint account in Barclay Bank UK.
The report said that besides, a sum of Dirhams 768,143 was transferred to M/s Bishop & Sewell LLP (OC319691) VAT No.333372670 59, 60 Russell Square London WC1B4HP UK, dealing in the sale and purchase of properties and legal advisory service to the clients, confirmed that accused Farhan Junejo purchased property in Britain.
On August 31, the FIA registered an FIR under section 3/4 of Money Laundering Act-VII 2010 and sections 161, 164, 165-A and 109 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) against Farhan Junejo, his family members and others.
The FIA has moved the Special Judge (Central-1) Karachi for grant of perpetual warrant of Farhan Junejo for subsequent process of issuance of red notice/warrant from Interpol.
The FIA has also approached the serious fraud office of Britain to retrieve the alleged ill-gotten money transferred by the accused.
The absconding Farhan Junejo was not available for comments as his mobile phone number 0300-3003639, given to this correspondent by one of his former colleagues in the commerce ministry, was switched off. However, his ex-colleagues said that Farhan Junejo worked as director to the minister when the alleged fraud in the TDAP took place. According to them, during his attachment with the minister, he was always considered a very powerful figure.
They said that Farhan Junejo actually belonged to the Sindh service and served in the province for years. He later quit several years back and settled abroad. However, subsequently he was reinstated around 2009 and made director to the commerce minister.
The fact that the FIA has approached the court seeking perpetual warrant for Farhan Junejo to contact Interpol indicates that neither the main accused nor any of his relatives, who are beneficiaries of the alleged illegal money, happened to be in Pakistan.