Two brothers who allegedly ran a casino illegally were arrested in Dhaka’s Keraniganj yesterday.
The Criminal Investigation Department of police arrested Enamul Haque Enu, vice-president of Gendaria Awami League, and Rupon Bhuiyan, joint general secretary of the same AL unit, at a rented flat where they had been living after failing to flee the country with forged passports.
Enamul and Rupon went into hiding after law enforcers launched a crackdown on illegal casinos, bars, spas and graft last year.
Wanderers Club, of which Enamul was the director, was raided by Rapid Action Battalion on September 18, the first day of the crackdown.
An aide of the two brothers, Sheikh Mostafa Sunny, was also arrested at the time.
The two brothers have 22 houses and plots in the capital, five cars, and Tk 19.11 crore in 91 bank accounts frozen by the Bangladesh Bank, said Imtiaz Ahmed, deputy inspector general (organised crime) of CID.
Law enforcers recovered Tk 40 lakh in cash and 12 mobile phones from their possession yesterday, Imtiaz told a press briefing.
“During the drive against casinos, the brothers fled to Cox’s Bazar. They planned to flee to Malaysia through Myanmar, but they failed due to the vigilance of law enforcers,” the officer said.
They later returned to Dhaka and took shelter at a rented flat of one of their employees. They were caught from there yesterday.
The brothers were trying to forge passports to flee to Nepal through India, he added.
To operate the casinos, Enamul and Rupon hired several Nepalese nationals.
Addicted to gambling since their childhood, they became the kingpins of illegal casinos in the capital, Imtiaz said.
During last year’s crackdown, the Rab found Tk 5.05 crore in cash, around 8.5kg gold, and six firearms in five lockers in their houses. Seven cases were filed against them.
The CID is investigating four money laundering cases against them.
In the crackdown, Rab arrested former Dhaka City South Jubo League President Ismail Hossain Samrat, Organising Secretary Khaled Mahmud Bhuiyan, construction mogul SM Golam Kibria Shamim, and Kalabagan Krira Chakra President Shafiqul Alam Firoz.
Many possible suspects fled the country at the time. Some of them started returning to the country recently, assuming that the anti-graft drive was over.
Among them, AKM Mominul Haque Sayeed, president of Arambagh Krira Sangha and expelled joint general secretary of the Dhaka South Jubo League, returned to the country and had been contesting the coming city corporation elections.
Sayeed is running for councillor of ward-9 of Dhaka South City Corporation. He was sacked form that post on October 17 last year for being “absent in meetings and staying abroad without permission”.
The CID officer was reminded during yesterday’s press conference that there were allegations of running illegal against Sayeed.
He said that the CID was only investigating the cases filed under the money laundering act.
“We are investigating nine cases, but Sayeed’s case is not one of those,” Imtiaz said.
Those who were arrested during the crackdown last year, told investigators the names of some influential politicians, police officers and government officials, sources said, adding that the names were sent to the top leadership about one-and-a-half-month ago.
Officials of law enforcement agencies said they would resume the anti-graft drive if they are directed to do so.