RICBL fugitive arrested in Nepal

Update: The Royal Insurance Corporation of Bhutan’s (RICBL) employee who absconded after allegedly siphoning of Nu 91.6M was arrested in Nepal.

Sources said that he would be flown to Paro from Nepal today. Although it is not known when and how he was arrested, sources said the employee who carries a cash reward of Nu 1M, is currently under Nepal police custody.

The RICBL’s executive director Sonam Dorji refused to comment saying that they are not aware of anything.

The absconded employee is a supervisor with RICBL’s Paro branch. He had absconded since June 20 this year from Paro. He is from Samdrupjongkhar and had joined RICBL in December 2006.

In a major development to the case, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) detained a Bhutan National Bank Ltd. (BNBL) employee for interrogation since July 30. She is alleged to have colluded with the supervisor who absconded and embezzled about Nu 50M. Sources said that money was embezzled from the bank and not the RICBL cash counter.

The BNBL employee served at its Paro branch office as an assistant IT officer prior to her transfer to Phuentsholing after which she was again transferred to Thimphu early this year.

Sources also said that another RICBL employee, a reconciler with the finance department, is suspected to have deposited a few millions into his bank account. He had allegedly hidden information on accounts from the management. He had resigned soon after the embezzlement case surfaced.

After the employee absconded, RICBL as a public institution reported the case to the ACC in line with the regulations. Even the police are investigating the case.

Following the embezzlement case, the RICBL management suspended two of its employee since July 11. The general manager of finance department and an internal auditor were suspended last week for failing to conduct their duty in connection with the case.

The Paro branch office is one of the biggest offices after Phuentsholing and Thimphu where substantial transactions take place in both insurance and credit.

By Kinga Dema

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