Iran Chides Canadian Interpol for Lack of Cooperation over Fugitive Banker

Iran Chides Canadian Interpol for Lack of Cooperation over Fugitive Banker

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Chief of the Interpol section of the Iranian police criticized the Canadian Interpol for shirking its responsibilities to extradite a former top Iranian banker who fled to that country amid inquiries into a massive fraud case.

“Despite pledges from the Canadian side, we have not seen any practical result from their pledges, and unfortunately, Canada’s Interpol police shirk responsibility,” Colonel Massoud Rezvani told the Tasnim News Agency on Friday, referring to an embezzlement case involving former head of Iran's Bank Melli, Mahmoud Reza Khavari.

Khavari who is said to hold dual citizenship and own a home in Toronto fled to Canada after the $2.6 billion financial fraud came to light in 2011.

The embezzlement case started in 2007 by Amir Mansour Arya Investment Company, and progressed in 2010 after some Iranian major banks, including Bank Saderat and Bank Melli, issued loans for the company.

Iranian officials say that the case involved the use of fraudulent documents to obtain credit for this investment company, one of the country's top financial institutions. The company used them to purchase assets such as state-owned companies.

Meanwhile, the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) has placed Khavari on its Red Notice Wanted list.

In the case of Red Notices, the persons concerned are wanted by national jurisdictions for prosecution or to serve a sentence based on an arrest warrant or court decision.

Colonel Rezvani further called on the North American country to honor its commitments pertaining to the case, and added, “Pursuing the case and extradition of Khavari are among the rights of Iran as a member state of the Interpol, and Khavari’s arrest is the smallest step that the Interpol section of the Canadian police can take.”

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