Drug Enforcement Commission’s anti-money laundering unit has arrested the liquidator of Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) Milingo Lungu for the theft of more than 17 million kwacha ($953,748).
The PF government put KCM into the hands of the Mr. Lungu in May 2019, triggering an ongoing legal dispute with Vedanta Resources, KCM’s parent company.
The Drug Enforcement Commission said in a statement that MR. Lungu, 45, transferred funds from the Liquidation Account to his Law Firm’s fixed deposit account between May and August this year.
“This arrangement earned him interest of K17,250,000.00 which he withdrew. Thereafter, he transferred back part of the principal amount to KCM Plc (in liquidation) through another account,” the statement said.
The Commission said it had since seized close to 137 million kwacha from Mr. Lungu in connection with these transactions.
Mr. Lungu had been released on a police bond and would appear in court soon.
On Oct. 26 Lungu appeared in court and denied other charges of money laundering and the theft of 4.4 million Zambian kwacha ($257,450).
Mr. Lungu’s lawyer Sakwiba Sikota said the anti-money laundering unit should have investigated the matter and placed all the charges against his client instead of bringing them separately.
“They are behaving like gamblers in a casino who are never sure of their bets and will spread their bets to have a better chance to win,” Mr. Sikota told Reuters.
Mr. Sikota also denied claims that Lungu’s account had been seized, saying there had been no court order for the forefiture of any of his client’s accounts after his arrest.