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DEC Apprehends Banker for Multi-Million Kwacha Fraud and Money Laundering

In a significant development, the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC), led by its Anti-Money Laundering Investigations Unit, has successfully arrested and formally charged a banker in connection with a colossal case of fraud and money laundering, involving a staggering K16.8 million.

The accused, identified as Kondwani Mhango, a 35-year-old male, was employed as a banker at a renowned commercial bank. As per the particulars of the case, Mr. Mhango, in collaboration with unidentified accomplices, is alleged to have orchestrated a complex scheme to defraud his employer. 

The fraudulent activities are believed to have taken place between May 1, 2020, and November 30, 2022.

During this period, it is alleged that Mr. Mhango illicitly accessed the bank’s suspense account, siphoning off funds amounting to K16,805,281. 

The suspected fraudster purportedly issued instructions to the bank’s cash management operations and the cash-in-transit (CIT) vendor, directing the delivery of cash to non-client beneficiaries. These individuals would subsequently hand over the money to him.

Furthermore, in the course of this intricate scheme, the accused is believed to have engaged in money laundering to conceal the illicit origin of the stolen funds.

As a result, Mr. Mhango has been formally charged with multiple offenses, including Unauthorized Access to Data, as stipulated in section 49 of the Cybersecurity and Cybercrimes Act No. 2 of 2021 of the laws of Zambia. 

Additional charges include Theft by Servant, as per section 278 of the Penal Code CAP 87 of the Laws of Zambia, and Money Laundering, according to section 7 of the Prohibition and Prevention of the Money Laundering Act No.14 of 2001, as amended by Act No. 44 of 2010.

Hussein Khan, the DEC Public Relations Officer, disclosed that the Commission, during its extensive investigations, had seized various properties owned by the suspect. These assets include two motor vehicles, two flats located in Lusaka’s Chalala area, and a house in Chongwe. Furthermore, two Kwacha bank accounts with a combined balance of K167,651.89 and a United States Dollar account holding USD 655.10 have been frozen, and K150,217 in cash has also been confiscated.

Mr. Khan confirmed that the accused is currently on bond and is expected to make an appearance in court in the near future. This apprehension and the subsequent legal actions are part of the DEC’s ongoing efforts to combat financial crimes and maintain the integrity of Zambia’s financial systems.

This story has been adopted from the Smart Eagles.

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