Fiscal Police and Financial Intelligence Authority (FIA) have launched a joint investigation on several individuals alleged to have benefitted from a $20 million (about K24 billion) transaction suspected to be proceeds of crime.
Police allege that at the centre of the transactions is South African William Bilderberg, also known as Willem Steenkamp, who is said to have deposited $20 million in a bank account held at Ecobank Malawi purportedly for investment purposes.
However, police say they believe that the money was proceeds of crime.
In a telephone interview yesterday, National Police spokesperson Peter Kalaya confirmed there is an ongoing joint investigations by the Fiscal Police and FIA against Bilderberg and several individuals who allegedly benefited from this suspicious funding.
He said preliminary findings show that the funds are proceeds of crime from other countries; hence, subjecting beneficiaries of the same to the probe.
Said Kalaya: “It is an extensive investigation targeting those who benefitted from the funds. We suspect this is part of money laundering.”
Kalaya: There is a joint investigation
He said the investigation also seeks to establish how the suspect, a foreign national, ended up with a Malawian passport.
Said Kalaya: “Two officials from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship Services and the National Registration Bureau [NRB] were arrested yesterday on the passport ‘syndicate’.
“The two are Kumbukani Kamvabingu [Immigration] and Glyn Kanyika Maseko an assistant registration officer [at NRB].”
The other suspects, according to Kalaya, are Bilderberg himsef, his business partner Edward Phambala, a Malawian, Zimbabwean Newman Nyoni, who is Bilderbeg’s former employee and Amidu Hendere, a dobadoba (a self-styled intermediary), at the Immigration offices, who was allegedly communicating with Kamvabingu.
Meanwhile, the High Court of Malawi has granted the FIA a preservation order against 11 individuals whose accounts have been frozen with multi-billion kwacha bank balances believed to be funds from Bildersberg’s deposit.
Court records show that in October 2022, Bilderberg came to Malawi through the Office of President and Cabinet (OPC) to invest in the coun try.
The records show that Bilderberg, in the same year, registered his company in Malawi and that later he had a deposit of $20 million being payment to him from Australia in his local account domiciled at Ecobank.
The bank froze the account and reported the matter to FIA, leading to the ongoing court battle.
FIA is yet to respond to our questionnaire.