PH Anti-Money Laundering Council probes Wirecard scandal

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 25 2020 06:04 PM

An employee of Wirecard AG, an independent provider of outsourcing and white label solutions for electronic payment transactions, presents the contactless payment system "boon" at the company's headquarters in Aschheim near Munich, Germany September 6, 2018. Michael Dalder, Reuters/File

MANILA - The Anti-Money Laundering Council said Thursday it was working with the National Bureau of Investigation to probe the scandal over German payment provider Wirecard's missing $2.1 billion in funds and the alleged involvement of some Philippine banks and nationals.

BDO Unibank and Bank of the Philippine Islands earlier denied involvement with Wirecard, adding that documents linking them to the firm were falsified.

"The AMLC is currently coordinating with the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) regarding the case, in accordance with our mandate," it said in a statement.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra earlier ordered the Bureau of Immigration to look into the whereabouts of former Wirecard COO Jan Marsalek, citing "indications" he might be in the country.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Benjamin Diokno earlier said the firm's missing money "did not enter the Philippines."

Dragging two of the country's biggest banks in the controversy could be a "cover up," said BPI president Cezar Consing. Both banks have terminated the rogue employees responsible for the falsified documents.

Lawyer Mark Kristopher Tolentino, an alleged trustee of Wirecard, was also implicated in the scandal. Tolentino said he had opened 6 euro accounts under his law firm M.K Tolentino Law Office for the "foreign-looking clients" who wanted to invest in the country.

Later on, he claimed, that his personal bank account and that of his law firm were used without consent and that he was being framed.

Wirecard's new management on Thursday filed for insolvency, citing "over-indebtedness."

-- with a report from Warren De Guzman, ABS-CBN News