Gold dealer held over $941M alleged fraud

– cops seeking former bank manager, others

A gold dealer is in police custody and several other persons including a former bank manager are wanted for questioning in relation to a recent multi-million-dollar fraud at the Guyana Bank for Trade and Industry (GBTI), Bartica.

Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum confirmed the arrest of the gold dealer, Saddiqi Bobby Rasul, who was taken into custody on Friday afternoon after he visited the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Headquarters in the company of his attorney.

Blanhum was unable to divulge any further details, owing to the sensitive nature of the matter.

However, reliable sources told this newspaper that as the investigation continues, the police are making efforts to locate six persons in whose names Rasul had allegedly written the cheques, as well as the bank manager, for questioning. After the fraud was unearthed, the bank manager was relieved of her duties.

Several checks were made yesterday at various locations for these individuals, but the police came up empty handed.

Rasul is being accused of defrauding the GBTI Bartica branch of $941 million between March 21 and 22.

According to information reaching this newspaper, the gold dealer deposited the cheques into his GBTI account and then several procedures were breached. Reports revealed that staff of the bank issued payments to Rasul without the cheques, which came from another bank, being cleared.

It is alleged that the bank manager was involved in allowing Rasul to withdraw the millions of dollars in cash. The cheques later bounced owing to insufficient funds and the police were called in.

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