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Published: Fri, August 10, 2018
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Former Malaysian PM Najib Razak to be charged with money laundering

Former Malaysian PM Najib Razak to be charged with money laundering

SRC International is a former subsidiary of 1MDB.

Malaysia's embattled former prime minister Najib Razak will be charged on Wednesday under a money-laundering act, the anti-graft agency said, in connection with a multi-billion-dollar scandal at state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). "Low in the public arena", the statement said.

THE Equanimity was seized under the laws of Malaysia, said Attorney-General Tommy Thomas hours after the luxury yacht docked at the Terminal Boustead Cruise Centre in Port Klang this afternoon.

Najib said the government should now remain focused on finding ways to repay the huge debt still owed to International Petroleum Investment Corporation (IPIC), instead of trying to sell the yacht off to the highest bidder.

On Saturday, the Indonesian government agreed to hand over the yacht to Malaysia.

Jho Low - full name Low Taek Jho - had no official positions at 1MDB but was said to exert great influence over the fund.

Former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak was set to face further questioning Tuesday by the country's anti-corruption agency.

The charges are related to the transfer of 42 million ringgit ($10.3 million) into his bank accounts from SRC International, a former unit of the 1MDB fund that USA investigators say was looted of billions by Najib's associates.

The suits allege that $1.7 billion worth of assets were allegedly bought with the stolen funds, which USA officials are seeking to recover.

In a Facebook video, Mahathir thanked Indonesia's government and President Joko Widodo for returning the US$250 million (AUD$337 m) yacht, Equanimity, which was seized by Indonesia off Bali in February in cooperation with the US FBI.

Opposition lawmaker Hishammuddin Hussein, who was formerly defense minister, said Tuesday that the move to close the center was a loss to the nation amid growing terrorism in the Muslim world. If there is anyone who claims the yacht is theirs, they can show proof that they own it. His current whereabouts are unknown but Malaysian authorities have said they want to bring him back to the country and prosecute him.

He said Indonesia, Malaysia and the US recently activated the mutual legal assistance treaties among themselves.

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