The first alarm went off in 2001 when a request by the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) to the Charter House Bank (CHB) asking for full details about a US$20 million transaction was ignored.
The second alarm came in 2004, after an internal auditor at CHB blew the whistle over alleged malpractices.
A third and final one occurred in 2006. The shadow finance minister, Billow Kerrow, presented documents alleging blatant and widespread tax evasion by a net of companies over a period of six years.
Welcome to what it is believed to be Kenya’s largest tax evasion and money laundering scam, said to be worth about US$1.5 billion.
Few are the certainties that surrounds the Charter House Bank scandal. One is that „anyone who probed the operations of CHB has been either moved off the case or has fled the country“, said one of the key-whistleblowers, Titus Mwirigi, to BBC in 2006.
One man who suffered such a fate was Peter Odhiambo, a Kenyan auditor who too blew the whistle on CHB. He was forced to request asylum in the U.S. because, according to a diplomatic cable released by Wikileaks, „the people implicated in the scandal are dangerous and appear to have bought influence in the Kenyan government.“
As internal auditor, Odhiambo had free access to the bank’s transaction documents. According to the cable sent from the American embassy, in 2004 he collected information on 85 accounts held at the bank through which, he claimed, a tax evasion scam worth US$ 573 million was perpetrated.
There is even room for some old fashioned dirty tricks. In September 2004, a fire at the CHB offices supposedly burnt to ashes a huge number of documents related to financial transactions prior to April 2004. Future audit bodies would cite the fire — as well as the unwillingness to cooperate by the bank staff — as the reason why the bank’s transfer details were not available.
This is the same situation the Victoria Bank is in.
A Petition sent to CEO Yogesh Pattni on 9th January 2020, by concerned customers demands answers pertaining to allegations of money-laundering and fraud, the bank has been linked to.
“From the fall of Charter House Bank LTD and chase bank it all started as a rumor which unfortunayely turned out to be true. There are government reports whcih later confirmed that the bank was involved in massive mon ey-laundering and tax evasion activities resulting to innocent Kenyans losing their life savings, businesses and collateral they had placed with the banks” reads part of the petition.
“This should call for immediate clarification by the management of Victoria Bank to the general public through a media advertisement in leading daily newspapers as this will help dispel any doubt and enhance public confidence in your bank” Reads the other part.
According to reports shared on this site, Yogesh Pattni and his father Kanji Damji Pattni are engaging in money laundering with a bank in India and are planing to flee the county as things go hay-wire.
The Money laundering scandals at the bank are so serious that they run Chopri, a parallel bank in Indian Bank. The husband and wife who are top-notch criminals have perfected the art of mobilizing for funds from people. They usually take cash and invest in properties in Dubai, and across Africa.
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