MetroBank execs kakasuhan for unsafe banking

NAKATAKDANG kalkalkin ng Senado ang resolusyon ng Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) na kumakastigo sa dalawang matataas na opisyal ng Metropolitan Bank matapos payagang makuha ang multi-milyong deposito gamit ang pekeng pirma sa tseke.

Base sa resolusyon ng Office of Special Investigation (OSI), mahigpit na inirerekomenda nito na kasuhan sina Crisostomo P. De Guzman at Helen Villaruel “for conducting business in an unsafe and unsound manner under Sec. 56.3 of RA 8791 (General Banking Law Act) be approved.”

Ipinahahain ang kaukulang kasong administratibo laban kina De Guzman at Villaruel sa Supervised Banks Complainants Evaluation Group ng BSP.

Base sa reklamo ni George Tano laban sa mga opisyal ng MetroBank, pinayagan umano nito na maipalit ang 46 tseke na pineke ang kanyang pirma ng dati nitong sekretaryang si Maricel Pasco Cruz na natuklasan nitong Disyembre 2010. May hiwalay na kaso na isinampa si Tano laban kay Cruz.

Sinabi sa resolusyon , OSI Admin Case No. 2011-16 ng BSP, “Mr. Tano alleged that sometime in December 21010, his long time secretary, Mrs. Maricel Pasco Cruz, absconded with numerous pieces of jewelry prompting him to check and review the transactions she handled.”

“Much to his surprise, complainant discovered that a total amount of P11,781,000 was illicitly drawn from his checking account with Metrobank through the acceptance and payments by the bank of around forty six (46) checks bearing his forged signatures,” ayon sa BSP.

“As such, he immediately reported the matter to the bank through counsel’s letter dated December 10, 2010, and demanded that the proceeds thereof be returned or paid back to him,” dagdag ng resolusyon.

Sa kanilang tugon, sinabi ng resolusyon na pinabubulaanan ng MetroBank ang alegasyon ni Tano dahil isa lamang itong malakas na taktika ng complainant upang masingil ang bangko sa nawala nitong deposito sanhi ng sariling kamalian at pagwawalang-bahala.

Ikinatuwiran pa ng MetroBank na hindi ang BSP ang siyang dapat duminig sa kaso ng pamemeke ng pirma kundi ang regular na korte  saka pinabulaanan na peke ang pirma dahil halos magkatugma ang kanyang lagda sa tseke sa mga dokumento ng bangko.

Ngunit, base sa resoluson ng BSP na nagsasabing “Respondents (MetroBank) ought to realize that because of the fiduciary obligation of the bank  to its depositors, they are duty bound to exervcise the highest degree of care in protecting and safeguarding the deposits of their clients. Undoubtedly, such obligation necessarily includes the investigation of fraud perpetuated on any deposit account,” ayon sa BSP.

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