Bangladesh eyes settlement in U.S. cyber heist suit ahead of its own case
NEW YORK/DHAKA (Reuters) - An Ecuadorian bank and Wells Fargo have reached an out-of-court settlement over a 2015 cyber heist, providing a possible precedent for the Bangladesh central bank's planned suit to recover $66 million still lost in one of the world's biggest such cases. Hackers breached Bangladesh Bank's systems in early 2016 and tricked the Federal Reserve Bank of New York into sending as much as $81 million to accounts at Rizal Commercial Banking Corp (RCBC) in the Philippines. While Bangladesh has not taken any legal action, bankers and lawyers saw the cyber-heist suit by Banco against Wells Fargo as a test for any options available to Bangladesh. They said the settlement could signal that Wells compensated Banco in some way, a possibly encouraging sign for Bangladesh Bank, But it could still struggle to get a hearing in the United States and prove that Manila-based RCBC had a contractual obligation to freeze the stolen funds. It is unclear what obligation RCBC has to Bangladesh Bank and whether U.S. law would apply.