India's Enforcement Directorate has seized assets worth around US$19.3 million deemed to be associated with a major organised fraud at Syndicate Bank.

Fake letters of credit (L/Cs) featured in the fraud, which in total may have netted the perpetrators as much as US$4 billion.

KYC deception

The ED says chartered accountant Bharat Bamb masterminded the fraud. He allegedly conspired with Syndicate Bank officials to steal dozens of know-your-customer (KYC) forms.

With these, the accountant was able to open fake current accounts for nonexistent firms and obtain large loans that were then deposited in various bank accounts opened by the fraudsters.

Various frauds

As well as loans, the conspirators obtained fake L/Cs and cheques from Syndicate Bank.

The assets seized by ED included property worth around US$16 million and cash deposited in various bank accounts of around US$3.3 million.

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