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Elderly Pinay charged with laundering $700k

16 October 2019

The Eastern Court was told Qazi was arrested when Ruttonjee staff alerted police

An elderly Filipina is facing a charge of money laundering in Eastern Court following the transfer of more than $700,000 into her Hang Seng Bank account from a Singapore woman’s bank account allegedly through an online scam.

The defendant, Shirina Amistad Qazi, was charged today, Oct 16, before Magistrate Bina Chainrai with dealing with property known or believed to represent proceeds of indictable offence, a euphemism for money laundering.
The prosecution said Qazi, 61, was arrested on Saturday when staff at Ruttonjee Hospital in Wanchai who attended to her found out she was on the watch list and alerted police.

According to the particulars of the offense, between Sept 8 and Sept 15, 2015, cash totaling $731,731 moved in and out of the defendant’s Hang Seng Bank account.
The huge amount triggered an alert at the bank, which informed the authorities. Investigators traced the fund source as a Credit Suisse account owned by a Singapore woman named Miss Teh. 

The prosecution said the account owner was a victim of a scam in which an email purportedly coming from her instructed Credit Suisse to transfer money into Qazi’s Hang Seng account. Several withdrawals were made from Qazi’s account after the transfer.
While the case was under investigation, Qazi disappeared on Jul 15 and put on the watch list on Aug 11. Her visit to Ruttonjee Hospital’s ER department for medical treatment on Oct 12 gave her away.

At the request of the defense counsel, Chainrai ordered the police to allow Qazi access to her mobile phone so she could call her family.

The magistrate adjourned the case until Nov 27 for legal advice and further investigation.

But Chainrai rejected Qazi’s bail application due to opposition from the prosecution, who said she had no travel document, had a previous conviction in 2011 and was a flight risk.

The defendant was remanded into custody.
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