On the heels of the multimillion-dollar fraud at a local bank involving the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) account, the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) is now reporting that it has unearthed almost $30 million in fraudulent wire transfers.
GWI’s Board of Directors in a statement confirmed that the incident occurred at a local commercial bank and the funds amount to $29,816,932.
The fraud was discovered by the water authority’s Finance Department upon reconciling accounts for March 2021. The sum of $17,489,417 was debited from GWI’s account on March 16, 2021, while on March 24, 12,327,515 was transferred.
GWI, was informed by the bank that the amounts represent payments made via wire transfer instructions, payable to persons residing in the USA, particularly the state of New York.
“The names of the recipients are Troy Robertson of 1405 Brooklyn Avenue AF2F Brooklyn Avenue, New York 11210 and Deyannera Mohamed of 1998 Pacific Street, Brooklyn NY 11216. It has been established that both signatures on the wire transfer instruction letters were forged,” the statement read.
Based on accounts from the GWI, the water entity indicated that it has never conducted business with the named individuals nor had it initiated or instructed the bank to carry out “these fictitious transactions.”
The Guyana Police Force was promptly called in and is currently conducting investigations. The Police fingerprint experts have since confirmed that the signatures were forgeries.
The Bank of Guyana has also been notified.
On Friday, several GRA clerks were charged in relation to $19.4 million fraud involving forged cheques which were cashed at the Guyana Bank for Trade and Industry (GBTI).
The fraud was unearthed after an employee of the Bank called GRA to confirm the issuance and the amount on the cheque that was attempting to be cashed. That was the fourth cheque as three others were already cashed.
The cheques were cashed at different branches of the bank in question – one at Diamond, EBD, and the other at its Regent Street, Georgetown location.
Those charged on Friday were GRA staffers Ivor Dowridge, 26, of Cummings Lodge, Georgetown; Tooqwan Clarke, 25, of West Ruimveldt, Georgetown; Randi Gladstone, 38; and accountant Leroy Green, 26, of Kitty, Georgetown.
On Tuesday, Romeschand Singh, 40, of Grove Squatting Area, East Bank Demerara (EBD); Komalram Persaud, 25, of Golden Grove, EBD; Devindra Moteeram, 24, of East La Penitence, Georgetown; Anush Khan, 29, of Diamond, EBD; and Shareesa Tappin, 26, of Clifford Avenue, Georgetown, were also charged.
They are all accused of conspiring with each other to defraud the GRA. (G2)