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Osmeña: Kim Wong a major player in money laundering scam

In this Thursday, March 17, 2016 photo, standing from left, East West Bank branch manager Allan Penalosa, Michael Bautista of the Philrem Services Corporation, Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation COO Eugene Manalastas and counsel Victor Fernandez, take their oaths prior to the start of the Philippine Senate probe into how about $81 million of Bangladesh's stolen funds were transmitted online to four private accounts at a branch of the Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. in suburban Pasay city, south of Manila, Philippines. The laundering through the Philippines of $81 million stolen by hackers from a U.S. Federal Reserve account is adding to pressures on the Southeast Asian country to fix loopholes in its financial regime. AP/Bullit Marquez

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Sergio "Serge" Osmeña on Monday revealed that businessman Kam Sin Wong (Kim Wong) appears to be a major player in the $81-million money laundering scandal.

RCBC Jupiter branch manager Maia Santos-Deguito revealed during a closed-door meeting with senators that Wong was the one who introduced her to five gentlemen and instructed her to open dollar accounts.

"She explained to us that there were five accounts that were opened in May 2015, at kinumbida siya sa isang merienda ni Mr. Kim Wong sa Midas Hotel, and he introduced Ms. Deguito to five gentlemen and said, 'I'd like you to open dollar accounts for these five gentlemen and here are their IDs, information sheet,'" Osmeña said in an interview with ANC's Headstart.

The senator added Deguito's testimony stated that Wong would check up on the bank on February 5 if the money had reached the RCBC accounts.

Deguito also claimed that Wong chose PhilRem as the remittance company, Osmeña said.

In 2001, Wong was tagged as one of former Sen. Panfilo Lacson's financiers during the investigation of the former senator's alleged hidden wealth and ties with drug lords.

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READ: Kim Wong leaves RP for China

"We will try to finish examining and nailing down the process that they follow with the remittance company. And then we want to know also what are the other activities William Go, Jason Go, Eastern Hawaiian, and the other companies do," the senator said.

Osmeña said Deguito has given her consent to the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee to disclose parts of her testimony during the executive session except those that could incriminate her.

Deguito is facing money laundering charges before the Department of Justice for the $81-million banking heist.

RELATED: DOJ issues subpoena vs Deguito

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