Thursday, July 12, 2007

Guards snatch $388,000 from Baghdad bank

Left: A bank manager and an Iraqi police officer count boxes of money at the Rafadan Bank in Ramadi in May. The money pictured was transported to the bank by Marines with Detachment II Civil Affairs Group. It is unknown if the money pictured is in Iraqi Dinar or U.S. dollars, or the source or purpose of the money other than 'to develop the Iraqi security forces, facilitate the development of official rule of law through democratic government reforms, and continue the development of a market based economy centered on Iraqi reconstruction'.

Washington/Baghdad - Three guards from a security firm made off with some 388,000 dollars from a Baghdad bank, a spokesman from the Iraqi Interior Ministry said Thursday, correcting an earlier statement that a possible world record 282 million dollars was taken.

The guards took 366,000 dollars in greenbacks and 282 million Iraqi dinar (22,500 dollars) from the vaults of the Dar Es Salaam bank in Baghdad, a private institution.

Read the rest at M&C

Note: The above report replaces the following, published earlier:

Anonymous official or officials allege $282 million in cash stolen by guards from 'private bank'

In an astonishing heist, guards at a bank here made off with more than a quarter-billion dollars on Wednesday, according to an official at the Interior Ministry.

The robbery, of $282 million from the Dar Es Salaam bank, a private financial institution, raised more questions than it answered, and officials were tight-lipped about the crime. The local police said two guards engineered the robbery, but an official at the Interior Ministry said three guards were involved.

Both confirmed that the stolen money was in American dollars, not Iraqi dinars. It was unclear why the bank had that much money on hand in dollars, or how the robbers managed to move such a large amount without being detected.

Several officials speculated that the robbers had connections to the militias, because it would be difficult for them to move without being searched through many checkpoints in Baghdad.

Read the rest at the NY Times