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Bloomberry receives summons in civil case brought by Bangladesh Bank over US$81 million hacking scandal

Bloomberry Resorts & Hotels Inc (BRHI), the subsidiary of Bloomberry Resorts responsible for the operation of Manila’s Solaire Resort & Casino, says it has received by mail a summons in relation to a civil case filed by Bangladesh Bank against 17 Philippines companies and individuals.

The civil case, which aims to recoup at least some of the US$81 million stolen from Bangladesh Bank by hackers in 2016 and subsequently transacted and lost through Philippines casinos, was originally filed in the New York State Court in May. BRHI said it received the summons on 9 September 2020.

Aside from BRHI and Solaire, defendants named in the case include Midas Hotel & Casino located in the Clark Freeport Zone north of Manila.

The complaint alleges conversion, theft and misappropriation; aiding and abetting the same; conspiracy to commit the same; Fraud; aiding and abetting and conspiracy to commit fraud; conspiracy to commit trespass against chattels; unjust enrichment; and return of money received.

As Bloomberry stated in May, this new civil case was filed despite the fact that Bangladesh Bank’s appeal against the dismissal of an earlier civil case by the United States District Court is still pending.

The original 2016 incident saw North Korean hackers issued 35 fraudulent instructions to transfer almost US$1 billion from Bangladesh Bank’s account with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The US bank blocked the majority of those but not before five transactions worth a combined US$101 million were processed.

Bangladesh Bank eventually recouped US$20 million traced to Sri Lanka, however US$81 million transferred to the Rizal Commercial Banking Corp (RCBC) in the Philippines was transacted and lost, partially through casinos, including Solaire, where some of the funds were used to purchase gaming chips and play in junket rooms.

Bloomberry has said it “will vigorously defend itself against these baseless charges.”

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