Afghanistan's central bank head Abdul Qadir Fitrat suddenly resigned from his post Monday, then quickly left the country.
Fitrat, who was the chairman of Afghan Central Bank and was being investigated for his role in a banking scandal that saw the privately owned bank distribute almost $900 million in fraudulent loans to government officials. The scandal, along with mismanagement, almost collapsed the country's largest bank.
With a warrant out for his arrest in his own country and fearing for his life, Fitrat has fled to the United States. He is currently staying in Virginia with his family. The US does not have an extradition treaty with Afghanistan.
Fitrat left his post without telling the Afghan government, who had him on a list for prosecution. The government has an open investigation in the loan scandal, but so far no one has been indicted.
This is not a resignation, this is treason to the Afghan people and a very irresponsible act, Waheed Omer, the chief spokesman for Afghan President Hamid Karzai, told Reuters.
Currently, the International Monetary Fund is attempting to stabilize the Afghan bank, and Fitrat departure may put billions of dollar at risk, the Wall Street Journal reported.