Following an alleged fraud involving the transfer of $500 million from Angolan state treasuries, British multinational lender, HSBC Holdings Plc has issued a freezing order for an account linked to the case.
A source who pled anonymity told Bloomberg that a banking transaction involving the transfer of a huge amount of money from the account caught the attention of UK authorities’ weeks ago.
The source further noted that the account at HSBC wasn’t registered under the name of Jose Filomeno dos Santos –son of Angola’s former president and former head of Angola’s sovereign wealth fund – but under the name of a company with no evident tie to the oil-rich nation. Britain’s National Crime Agency had previously informed Reuters on its plan to return funds to the African nation.
Jose with other nine targeted individual has been accused by prosecutors of carrying out a fraudulent transfer of State’s $500 million into a Swiss bank in London. He confirmed being aware of the accusation on Monday before heading to the prosecutor’s office to drop his passport as demanded.
Documents alleged to be from a Swiss bank in the London branch with a link to the fraudulent allegation have also been discovered by Credit Suisse Group AG, Financial Times reported. However, it was noted that the firm didn’t receive any related funds.
In a reaction to the order of freezing the account, HSBC executives welcomed the seizure order on the account as it signifies the effectiveness of the company’s compliance systems, a report said.
HSBC in 2012 paid $1.9 billion to resolve U.S. accusations that it was involved in aiding drug cartels in laundering money and in other illicit payments.