Indian-origin banker among 3 held in UK for $2 billion fraud, face extradition to US

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LONDON–An Indian-origin banker is among three people arrested in the United Kingdom and face extradition to the US over their alleged role in a $2 billion fraud schemes linked with companies in Mozambique. PTI reported.

Fourty-four-year-old Surjan Singh was arrested along with Andrew Pearse, 49 and Detelina Subeva, 37, on Thursday in London and charged in an indictment issued by a US District Court in New York, PTI quoted US authorities as saying.

The three men, all former Credit Suisse bankers, have been released on bail and now face extradition to the US on the charges. The scheme allegedly involved loans to state-owned companies in Mozambique, according to PTI, quoting a BBC report.

“The US indictment says that through a series of financial transactions between approximately 2013 and 2016, more than USD 2 billion was borrowed through loans guaranteed by the Mozambican government,” PTI reported.

It claims over the course of the transactions, the co-conspirators acted to defraud investors.

They created maritime projects as fronts to raise money to enrich themselves, and “intentionally diverted portions of the loan proceeds to pay at least USD 200 million in bribes and kickbacks to themselves, Mozambican government officials and others,” the indictment reads.

In a statement, Swiss investment bank Credit Suisse said the three former employees were accused by the US authorities of “circumventing our internal controls” in a fraud connected to the Mozambican government.

“No action has been taken against Credit Suisse. The indictment alleges that the former employees worked to defeat the bank’s internal controls, acted out of a motive of personal profit, and sought to hide these activities from the bank,” the statement said, according to PTI.

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