Former Commonwealth Bank IT executive, Keith Hunter, has been arrested and charged with bribery as part of an investigation by the NSW Police Fraud & Crime Squad and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Earlier this year, NSW Police were contacted by CBA after internal investigations uncovered some suspicious payments that had been deposited into the accounts of two of the bank’s senior IT staff, both Sydney-based US nationals.
On Tuesday, detectives from the Fraud & Cybercrime Squad’s Corporate Corruption Unit arrested Hunter, 61, at his residential unit in Surry Hills, NSW Police said.
Hunter appeared at Central Local Court on Wednesday and pleaded not guilty to two counts of bribery. He was released on bail on conditions that he report to police daily, surrender his passport, and not enter an airport.
Detectives from Strike Force Drawl have alleged that Hunter and another one of the bank's former employees were involved in a corrupt relationship with a now publicly-listed overseas technology provider.
NSW Police said they will contend that managers granted a lucrative contract to a US-headquartered IT supplier without putting it to tender. To date, more than US$1.5 million in suspected corrupt payments have been frozen by officers from the Fraud & Cybercrime Squad.
Police from Strike Force Drawl are particularly keen to speak to another one of the bank’s former senior IT managers, who is currently overseas, and have asked the FBI to assist with their enquiries.
Commander of the Fraud & Cybercrime Squad, Detective Superintendent, Arthur Katsogiannis, commended the staff and investigators at the bank, who provided valuable insight and support to detectives working on the case.
A Commonwealth Bank spokesperson confirmed that a former executive is appearing before the NSW Court this morning.
"CBA reported this matter to the NSW Police and we will continue to fully cooperate while the investigation continues," the spokesperson said.
"We have no tolerance for any illegal activity by any employee and we take every situation seriously. We confirm that no customer has been affected by this matter. It is not appropriate to further comment while this matter is before the court.”
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