GOVERNMENT prosecutors have asked a Makati court to exclude Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. from intervening in a money-laundering case in connection with the February 2016 Bangladesh Bank heist that involved five former and current officials of the bank.

In a motion filed on Monday, prosecutors said Rizal Bank has “no valid and legal justification” in participating in the case “unless they acquiesced to the money laundering committed by the accused.”

They also accused the lender of preventing the government from prosecuting those responsible for money laundering.

“The state reserves its right to file appropriate criminal cases against the responsible officers of RCBC, in wilfully obstructing and/or frustrating the successful prosecution of criminal offenders,” it added.

The Justice department noted that the bank had filed a motion to quash the subpoena for the testimony of a witness, because it may be held liable. The court has denied the motion. — Vann Marlo M. Villegas