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Saturday, June 17, 2017

Don’t ignore criminal probe into 1MDB, DAP tells IGP

gobind-khalid-1mdb-1© Provided by MToday News Sdn Bhdgobind-khalid-1mdb-1
PETALING JAYA: DAP legislators active in legal circles want Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar not to be hasty in brushing aside the possibility of police action on alleged financial improprieties related to 1MDB.
They said such a move should not be dismissed on the basis that the police cannot interfere in the matter being probed by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) for alleged money laundering.
Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo said Khalid should just stay focussed on the facts of the case.
“It is not uncommon that the same facts in a case involving civil liability also provide basis for a criminal prosecution. They often overlap,” he said.
“So the IGP should not be hasty and dismiss outright the need for a local probe in the matter.
“This is a case which has drawn a huge amount of interest both locally and internationally,” he told FMT yesterday.
Gobind was responding to Khalid’s assertion that the police will not interfere in legal action by the DoJ to recover some US$540 million (RM2.3 billion) in assets allegedly funnelled from 1MDB and used to fund extravagant spending by certain people and their associates.
He had said that it was a civil action that the Malaysian police would not interfere with.
Gobind said Khalid must appreciate that a large amount of wealth was allegedly involved, making it natural for demands to be made for a thorough probe and other relevant action.
He also said Attorney-General Mohamed Apandi Ali needs to do more to inspire confidence among the people on the issue.
“It would be helpful if he disclosed the money trail which he referred to as the basis of his findings in the earlier investigation. That would put things in better perspective,” Gobind said.
He said Apandi needs to reveal if statements had been taken from key individuals implicated in the affair, such as businessman Jho Low.
He said while actions are already being undertaken by other countries on the matter, the Malaysian police are dragging their feet on investigating 1MDB and its subsidiary SRC International.
“Clarify allegations on jewellery purchase”
Ipoh Barat MP M Kulasegaran called for an independent investigation in Malaysia on allegations made in the DoJ probe as it involves a Malaysian company.
He said claims, such as that of US$1.3 million (RM5.56 million) being used to buy 27 pieces of jewellery for the wife of “Malaysian Official 1” (MO1) in 2014, must be answered by Prime Minister Najib Razak as he occupies the public office.
“It is a good opportunity for the prime minister to openly come out and explain the role of the wife in the case.
“I think that more people are involved in the case. It does not matter that it is a civil case and not a criminal one,” Kulasegaran told FMT.
He added the police should get involved because the allegations involve 1MDB, a sovereign wealth fund under the Malaysian government.
“The (US) government has initiated the case on money laundering which should automatically attract our law enforcers to look at the issues raised.”
He also urged Apandi to take a step further to probe into the matter in view of public perceptions that “something serious is taking place”.
The DoJ alleged that some US$1.3 million in funds traceable to a misappropriated Deutsche Bank loan proceeds were used to purchase 27 pieces of jewellery for the wife of “Malaysian Official 1” (MO1) in 2014.
Kulasegaran said Najib must explain this matter.
He also asked if the jewellery allegedly bought by the wife will be handed over to the DoJ.
“All this while we did not know the wife was directly involved. The wife cannot run away,” he said.

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