Details released of VBS ‘Great Bank Heist’
A FORENSIC report by investigators appointed by the Reserve Bank into the failure of VBS Mutual Bank has found that there is no hope of salvaging the institution and details how it was captured by corrupt directors and accomplices with political connections.
The report, titled “The Great Bank Heist”, was released by the central bank on Wednesday and finds that about 50 people gratuitously received R1.894 billion from the bank over a three-year period starting in March 2015. Most of that money flowed to VBS executives and entities linked to them, notably Vele Investments, resulting in the “significant impoverishment” of the bank’s depositors.
The report was penned by advocate Terry Motau, who led the probe along with Werksmans Attorneys, and recommends that criminal sanctions be brought against the culprits, that funds be frozen by the Asset Forfeiture Unit to recover the spoils and that steps be taken against KPMG.
It found that the firm signed off on the bank’s statements though it was aware of its R1bn shortfall.