KARACHI: The Federal Investigation Agency conducted a raid in Kharadar and detained two persons for their alleged involvement in hawala business and recovered a huge amount of cash and other evidence from their possession, officials said on Thursday.

FIA Karachi director Munir Ahmed Shaikh said that in continuation of a campaign against illegal business of hawala/hundi dealers, FIA, Commercial Banks’ Circle (CBC), Karachi, conducted a raid at a hawala operator in Bombay Bazaar in Kharadar and apprehended two persons, Saad Yaseen and Mohammad Asif.

The FIA team also recovered Rs9.2 million, five mobile phones having “incriminating materials” on WhatsApp messages of hawala and hundi, three laptops having ledger of illegal transactions of hawala, 20 deposit slips and hundreds of blank deposit slips of different banks, chequebooks of 15 different banks, 50 open cheques with signatures and 10 rubber stamps of different companies.

In addition, the mobile phone data showed alleged illegal transactions of millions of rupees which revealed that the held persons were involved in the hawala/hundi business at higher level, added the senior officer.

Accordingly, the FIA registered a case against the suspects under Sections 4, 5 (23) of the Foreign Exchange Regulations Act, 1947 and Section 109 of the Pakistan Penal Code.

Thursday’s FIA raid was the fifth such action on illegal hawala operators within three days.

“The recent raids on illegal hawala operators will help government of Pakistan show its commitment to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) that Pakistan is showing zero tolerance for hawala operators as well as for money launderers,” observed the FIA director.

Published in Dawn, July 17th, 2020