The High Court (HC) has asked the Anti-Corruption Commission to update its information on money laundering and submit new names of the people who have siphoned off money from the country.
The court set a deadline of 28 February next year for the ACC and other public agencies to submit the details. The day was also fixed for the next hearing on updates in this regard.
A High Court bench comprising Justice Md Nazrul Islam Talukder and Justice Ahmed Sohail passed the order on Thursday as the ACC and public agencies submitted reports on money launderers in response to an earlier order of the court.
The ACC, home affairs and foreign affairs ministries, Bangladesh Bank, Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit and National Board of Revenue (NBR) submitted their respective reports to the court on Thursday.
Upon submission of the reports, the court voiced its displeasure at the ACC for providing old information in its report."These reports do not have updated information since the HC passed the order on 22 October," said the court.
In its report, the ACC mentioned 100 money launderers, including expelled Jubo League leader Ismail Chowdhury Samrat. Besides, the ACC in its report said that Tk2,500 crore has been laundered so far.
The court said, "We want the names of those who have siphoned off money from the country. Give us the new names. Samrat is still behind bars, and tell us about others who were involved."
"Although millions of taka were siphoned off from the country, the ACC could bring back only Tk41 crore. A few people launder money and the people of the country deserve to know about the culprits. We want to know the names and addresses of the money launderers."
Meanwhile, the Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit (BFIU) told the court that it had asked Canada for information on Bangladeshi money launderers staying in that country.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs made it known that it will update the court as soon as Bangladesh missions abroad send reports to it on money launderers.
According to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of police, casino businessman Samrat smuggled money to Singapore, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand and Sri Lanka through seven hackers. Only Samrat and Enamul Haque Arman siphoned off more than Tk232.37 crore to Singapore.
Earlier on 22 November, an HC bench of Justice Md Nazrul Islam Talukder and Justice Ahmed Sohail sought detailed information, including the names and identities of the money launderers.The ACC chairman, Bangladesh Bank governor, National Revenue Board chairman and Dhaka deputy commissioner were asked to submit the information by 17 December.
The court also issued a ruling asking government offices concerned why their inaction in curbing money laundering should not be declared illegal.
After that, representatives of the agencies concerned met twice with the attorney general to prepare the response to the court order.
The last meeting was held on 14 December at the attorney general's office. Representatives of the ACC, home ministry, foreign ministry, central bank, BFIU and NBR were present at the meeting.
After the meeting on the day, Attorney General AM Amin Uddin told the media, "We all sat together to decide on the reply. If everyone gives us their respective statements, we will affidavit it and submit it to the court, nothing else. The information will be given as it is. Everyone is taking preparations to respond to the HC order."
On Thursday, Attorney General AM Amin Uddin, Deputy Attorney General AKM Amin Uddin Manik and Assistant Attorney General Tahmina Polly represented the state during the hearing, while lawyer Khurshid Alam Khan moved in favor of the ACC.
Supreme Court Bar Association Secretary Barrister Ruhul Quddus Kajol also took part in the hearing.