Fri, Mar 16, 2012 - Page 10 News List

China detains Standard Chartered private banker


British bank Standard Chartered PLC said its private-bank relationship manager, Wu Yidian Eden (吳伊甸), has been detained by police in China.

“We are unable to comment on the reason for her detention — this is a matter for the police,” Singapore-based spokeswoman Melissa Cheah said in an e-mailed response to queries yesterday. “We can confirm that Standard Chartered is not being investigated.”

Police from Wuxi City, Jiangsu Province, notified Wu’s family in Shanghai of her detention on Tuesday last week, the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday.

Chinese authorities are investigating a client of Wu, a naturalized Singaporean citizen, who allegedly fled with as much as US$50 million from Agricultural Bank of China Ltd (中國農業銀行), according to the report.

A press officer at state-owned Agricultural Bank declined to comment and four calls to the Wuxi city government’s publicity department were not answered.

Singapore’s consulate-general in Shanghai is aware of the case and will render all necessary consular assistance, attache Lynn Ho said in an e-mail.

Standard Chartered, the third-largest foreign bank by branches in China, cannot comment further on the detention as it is part of an ongoing investigation, Cheah said.

Jason David Tan, Wu’s fiance, said she had been questioned “repeatedly” since the middle of January by police in Shanghai about a client who was a banker with Agricultural Bank’s branch in Jiangyin, the Journal reported. That client is alleged to have fled overseas, according to the report.

Standard Chartered, HSBC Holdings PLC and Hong Kong-based Bank of East Asia Ltd are among foreign lenders expanding in China to tap its growing wealth.

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