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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Swiss criminal probe seeks two 1MDB officials

Swiss investigators in their 1MDB criminal probe are seeking two Malaysians in connection with an alleged illicit US$700 million transfer.
According to Bloomberg, the duo is described as "T and L" and could only be identified as such under Swiss law.
It is understood that the two alphabets stand for Casey Tang Keng Chee and Jasmine Loo Ai Swan who is also wanted by Malaysian authorities.
The report said the duo were being investigated for bribery, misconduct in public office, money laundering and criminal mismanagement.
Swiss authorities have been on the hunt for the duo since July 10, following Swiss attorney-general Michael Lauber's meeting with his Malaysian counterpart in Putrajaya.
Bloomberg reported that neither Tang nor Loo were listed in public phone records and the news organisation was unable to locate any of their representatives.
Loo was described as the "main point of contact" between 1MDB with Goldman Sachs, which was now being probed by US authorities over its role in helping 1MDB raise US$6.5 billion between 2012 and 2013.
"We had no visibility into whether some of those funds may have been subsequently diverted to other purposes by the issuer, members of the Malaysian government or others," Edward Naylor, a Hong Kong-based spokesman for the bank, told Bloomberg.
Goldman Sachs made US$600 million in commissions from that deal.
As for Tang, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) had alleged that he misled banks and concealed certain facts from 1MDB's board of directors in order to transfer US$700 million to Good Star Ltd, which in turn is supposedly owned by fugitive businessperson Low Taek Jho (above).
The DOJ had alleged that Tang and Loo were paid US$5 million and US$5.9 million respectively with funds that allegedly originated from 1MDB.
Both Tang and Loo have been sought by Bank Negara investigators since 2015.
Switzerland is a focal point for 1MDB investigators because several banks operating in the country – JP Morgan, Falcon Private Bank and BSI SA - were allegedly involved with funds which originated from 1MDB.
Investigations into the 1MDB affair has taken off in earnest in Malaysia after the Pakatan Harapan administration came to power.
At its peak, 1MDB had borrowed RM42 billion and suffered cashflow problems. Putrajaya has confirmed that it had to bail out both 1MDB and its former subsidiary SRC International Sdn Bhd. - Mkini

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