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Date [ 2016-02-24, 06:57 ]

The saga id 1MDB continues abroad.

No let up for the PM.(Cr)Wikipedia

(Kuala Lumpur=Camillo Menzes = A Reuters report informs that Swiss authorities have announced that USD4 billion has been misappropriated from Malaysian state firms.

In early February this year, Switzerland's chief prosecutor revealed that their investigations into the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) had shown that about USD4 billion appeared to have been misappropriated from Malaysian state companies.

The office of Swiss Attorney General Michael Lauber, has formally asked Malaysia to help with its investigations into possible violations of Swiss laws. These would be related mainly to money laundering and linked to bribery of foreign officials, misconduct in public office and criminal mismanagement of the fund.

Malaysia’s Attorney General's had his office issue a statement which said that it would take all possible steps to follow up and collaborate with its Swiss counterpart. It also added that the investigations into donations made to Najib were entirely separate from those into 1MDB.

Meanwhile, the Swiss Attorney General’s office has identified four cases of alleged criminal conduct. "The monies believed to have been misappropriated would have been earmarked for investment in economic and social development projects in Malaysia," the Swiss authorities stated. It made known that each case involved "a systematic course of action carried out by means of complex financial structures."

The four cases are related to former 1MDB subsidiary SRC international, Petrosaudi, Genting/Tanjong, and ADMIC between 2009 and 2014, Swiss AG’s office revealed.

Back home in Malaysia, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission had been asked to close all probes into SRC and on monies deposited in PM Najib's account.

Petrosaudi in the meantime issued a statement that denied any transgression in connection with its joint venture with 1MDB, which was wound up in 2012. Petrosaudi did promise that if its assistance "is requested, it will cooperate fully with the authorities."

No response was elicited from Genting,Tanjong and ADMIC. As such, no concrete affirmation could be made on these companies as the Swiss press releases did not specify how these companies were involved.

The Swiss authorities began investigations last August into 1MDB. Lauber's office proclaimed that a small portion of the apparently misappropriated money had been transferred to accounts  in Switzerland. These accounts are believed to be held by former Malaysian public officials and also current and former public officials from the United Arab Emirates.

Lauber had discussed the 1MDB case with his Malaysian counterpart at a meeting in Zurich last September. It is understood the Malaysian side had strongly advocated Lauber call off his investigations into !MDB.

1MDB has declared that it has not been contacted by any  foreign legal authorities on any matters relating to it. May be not, but apart from Switzerland, other countries investigating 1MDB are the US, Singapore, Hong Kong and two other countries.


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