Mainland police have offered 20,000 yuan for information leading to the arrest of a banker suspected of embezzling more than 26 million yuan from a Heilongjiang branch of the Agricultural Bank of China. Zhang Yanpeng, 46, was director of a sub-branch in Daqing and made off with the funds on May 19, a statement on the Ministry of Public Security's website said. The Daqing People's Procuratorate was investigating another embezzlement case and discovered Zhang had embezzled more than 26 million yuan. It ordered his arrest last month and offered the reward yesterday. It is the second time this year that the ministry has issued warrants for staff of the bank, which is rushing to meet requirements for a public listing. In April, the ministry issued warrants for the arrest of two bank employees in Handan, Hebei, who fled with 51 million yuan. Mainland bank security has been under fire for years, with many bank workers, from junior to senior staff, implicated in theft or embezzlement. Despite the authorities' repeated pledges to clean up banking and accounting, the thefts continue. Official media reported that about 4,000 officials - most of them bankers, fund managers and officials at financial institutions - have pocketed billions of yuan and fled the country in recent years. Recent cases involving former bankers fleeing overseas have included an official in the Agricultural Bank of China's branch in Urumqi, Xinjiang, who escaped to Russia with 2.3 million yuan stolen from clients' deposits. Two junior officials from the Bank of China branch in Nanhai, Guangdong, carried 40 million yuan of the bank's reserve deposits to Phuket, Thailand. Experts said bank branches, especially low-level ones, were more likely to experience such thefts because of lax safeguards. Chinese Academy of Social Sciences economist Han Meng said banks should improve monitoring and increase transparency to close loopholes. 'We hear such scandals about bank staff members running off with huge amounts of funds several times a year,' he said. 'The number of such cases is dropping but the demand for banks to improve supervision remains high.' He said banks should also work on offering ethical training to frontline staff, especially in low-level branches where only a few people were employed, which made it easier for staff to collude on embezzlement.