In recent court hearing of the 1MDB case, a number of controversial revelations have been discovered between Jho Low and former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s alleged involvements in the misappropriation of 1MDB funds.
On 14 March, FBI agent Eric Van Dorn revealed that Jho Low stole US$1.42 billion (≈RM5.9 billion) from 3 bond transactions that Goldman Sachs Group Inc arranged for 1MDB.
Van Dorn, who is a forensic account for the FBI, said he reviewed 59,000 bank records to determine where the money from the three 1MDB deals went.
He took stand at the trial of ex-Goldman banker Roger Ng in the Federal Court in Brooklyn, New York.
In addition to his testimony about Jho Low, he told the jury that former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak reaped US$756 million (≈RM3.1 billion) of the $6.5 billion (≈RM27.3 billion) raised in the bond offerings, while his stepson, Riza Aziz, pocketed $238 million (≈RM1 billion).
He also said that Aziz then invested at least US$60 million (≈RM252 million) from the funds he pocketed to produce The Wolf of Wall Street.
On the other hand, Van Dorn said Khadem al-Qubaisi, a former managing director of Abu Dhabi’s state-owned International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC), which guaranteed the 1MDB transactions, received US$472.8 million (≈RM1.98 billion).
He also described another Abu Dhabi official who worked with IPIC’s subsidiary and received US$76.6 million (≈RM322 million).
While prosecutors have long alleged that Jho Low paid bribes to officials in Malaysia and Abu Dhabi to facilitate the deals, Van Dorn’s testimony was the first time the US detailed how those involved in the 1MDB deals were paid and how much they received.
Van Dorn also told the jury that Ng got US$35.1 million (≈RM147.7 million) from two of the three bond transactions, while former Goldman banker Tim Leissner, who pleaded guilty to the fraud and is cooperating with the US against Ng, got US$73.4 million (≈RM309 million).
Meanwhile, one of Ng’s lawyers, Jacob Kaplan, questioned Van Dorn about how Leissner collected an additional US$39.7 million (≈RM167 million) which went from Jho Low’s accounts into an entity under the control of Leissner’s ex-wife Judy Chan Leissner, suggesting that the government had also given Leissner a break on these funds.
Van Dorn said it was because his chart was based on certain transactions which occurred during the time frame of the three 1MDB bond transactions and that he’d only included money directly traceable back to Goldman Sachs’s funding of the three deals.
Najib was convicted in Malaysia and sentenced to 12 years in prison in connection with SRC International, a former subsidiary of 1MDB. He is appealing the conviction.
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