-Court Interpreters to spit it out
Four (4) Chinese nationals who were arrested for defrauding several Zambian bank by hacking ATM machines have disappeared after being granted bail controversially by a Lusaka Magistrate.
The four were arrested in November 2018 by the Drug Enforcement Commission after the theft of over K1.7 million from one of the banks through that ATM. An assortment of card readers, card writers, laptops and 99 ATM cards were found in their possession. Of the 99 cards 31 of them were confirmed to contain counterfeit bank information for different people.
A bench warrant was issued by the same court a few days ago against all the sureties who apparently are civil servants. The D.E.C has equally and shocking not arrested the sureties despite them being known. Insider reports however indicate that the fugitive Chinese were communicating with the court interpreters/marshals a few days before they disappeared.
The interpreters are alleged to have received huge amounts of money from the suspects and are threatening to spill the beans if they are arrested. The toothless D.E.C seems stuck and no arrests have been made.
The interesting aspect was that the state prosecutors objected to any bail applications by the suspects through their lawyers as they had no fixed aboard and were a fright-risk. But the magistrate Sylvia Munyinya surprisingly granted them bail with two sureties each paying only K2500.
This is the same magistrate who granted bail to two Zimbabwean nationals charged with fraud and money laundering in Zambia a year ago but equally disappeared after being granted bail.
Sophisticated cyber bank fraud is on the rise in Zambia but most banks are not reporting the cases for fear of losing clients.