Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) reports Mirza Ikhtiar Baig and family for unauthorized capital flight, evasion

KARACHI: Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) of the State Bank of Pakistan has forwarded the case of Mirza Ikhtiar Baig, Mirza Ishtiaq Baig, Mirza Omar Baig and Imran Baigto Inland Revenue Intelligence & Investigation as they are suspected to be involved in unauthorized capital flight and tax evasion.

Mirza Ikhtiar Baig and Mirza Ishtiaq Baig are brothers; they are known businessmen and industrialists, while Mirza Omar Baig is the son of Mirza Ikhtiar Baig and Imran Baig is son of Mirza Ishtiaq Baig.

The family has been buying frequently foreign currency from different exchange companies in a structured manner and in a short span of time. Therefore, different exchange companies reported Suspicious Transaction Report (STR) on the group of family members to Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) of State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).  The family bought foreign currency worth $0.832 million in a short span of time.

Mirza Ikhtiar Baig is the Chairman and CEO of Baig Group of Industries, a multinational conglomerate engaged in diversified industrial and commercial activities in Pakistan, UAE and Morocco. He also own Pak Denim Pvt Ltd. he is the Senior Vice President of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and  Industry (FPCCI), Honorary Consul General of Yemen in Pakistan and one of the trustees of Make A Wish Foundation Pakistan.

According to Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) report, Mirza Ikhtiar Baig frequently purchased US dollars in structured manner.

Mirza Ishtiaq Baig is the Vice Chairman of Baig Group of Industries and CEO of PDL Denuim Pvt Ltd. he is also the chairman of Pakistan Morocco Business Council and associated with FPCCI. He is founding president of Make A Wish Foundation Pakistan. Mirza Ishtiaq Baig frequently purchased US dollars in structured manner. Mirza Omar Baig owns M.L Textiles engaged in manufacturing and import/export of textiles.

The family members are maintaining personal accounts in different currencies and multiple currency transaction reports (CTRs) were reported on these accounts and the transaction activities in the accounts were found abnormal.

High volumes of funds have been remitted out of country from their USD accounts to their personal accounts in Dubai. The transaction pattern shows that the family members have withdrawn the funds from their PKR accounts through clearing, followed by purchase of foreign currency from open market and then deposit into foreign currency accounts in cash and afterwards the funds were remitted out of country.

It was noticed while reviewing their tax history that the individuals and their companies paid less amount of tax in 2015 as compared to 2014. Therefore, it appears that they conducted such type of transactions to evade taxes. Moreover, the tax paid by the individuals is much less as compared to their transactional activities profiles.

An official said that businessmen particularly those involved with trade bodies had been reported for suspected money laundering, tax evasion and unauthorized flight of capital.

Most of trade bodies are usually formed as a pressure group, which do not serve the trade and industry or the nation. An official said certain trade bodies were enabling and patronizing their members for revenue evasion and money laundering. A large number of businessmen representing various trade bodies are involved in duty/tax evasion and misuse of concessionary SROs such as SRO No. 1125(I)/2011.

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