Wife of MH370 crew member shocked over missing money

Tragic circumstances: Chew and her husband Tan Size Hiang, a crew member of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.

PETALING JAYA - The wife of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 crew member Tan Size Hiang is reeling in shock that money has been siphoned from her husband's bank account.

Elaine Chew, 35, said she could not believe that someone would have the audacity to prey on Tan and three other victims of the flight that went missing with 239 passengers on March 8.

"No one at the bank or the police told me about the theft. I found out from the newspapers," she said.

"I then went to the bank to ask but they would not release any information to me because they said it was private and confidential. I don't even know how much was taken."

That was the second time she was turned away.

Chew said she contacted the bank after the MH370 tragedy to settle her husband's credit card bills but was denied access to his account.

"I don't know what to say. I can't get into my husband's account but someone else could access it and take the money from him. I'm surprised.

"I want to thank Malaysia Airlines, which has been very concerned about me regarding this issue, especially the human resources department and my caregivers," Chew said.

Money from Tan's bank account was among four that had been siphoned, with the total loss amounting to RM110,643 (S$44,000).

The other accounts belonged to Malaysian Hui Pui Heng, 66, and Chinese nationals Ju Kun, 32, and Tian Jun Wei, 29.

Federal Commercial Crimes Investigation Department director Comm Datuk Mortadza Nazarene said Bukit Aman was hunting for two more suspects, including a Pakistani man, over the siphoning.

A HSBC Bank Malaysia officer and her husband, both 33, have already been arrested.

The Pakistani is one Ali Farran, in his 30s, while the other suspect is a Malaysian, known only as Raj and believed to be the mastermind.

HSBC communications head Marlene Kaur said the bank discovered the siphoning and lodged a police report.

"HSBC is deeply sorry for the incident and apologises to the families of our customers for the distress this will cause, and assures them there will be no losses on these accounts," she said.