Archive for June, 2017

Dirty money

By Una Galani
16 June 2017

1MDB’s money trail is quite something. Cash siphoned from the disgraced Malaysian sovereign fund ended up in a luxury yacht, technology startups, the movie “Dumb and Dumber To”, a pink diamond pendant, and artwork by Picasso and Basquiat, the U.S. Department of Justice alleges. This reads like a parody of the shopping habits of the rich and decadent.

With the latest filing, made public on Thursday, authorities now claim more than $4.5 billion was misappropriated between 2009 and 2015. Out of that, the DOJ is seeking to seize $1.7 billion of assets. The lawsuit shows in gritty detail how money was handled by the world’s biggest banks including Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank. They are not accused of wrongdoing, but no one comes out looking good in the largest case brought under the department’s so-called “Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative”. Read the rest of this entry »

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US moves to seize another $540m of Malaysia’s 1MDB fund

17th June 2017

Malaysia officials have denied US allegations that the assets were stolen from the country’s sovereign wealth fund.

The US Department of Justice is seeking to recover $540m in assets that it says were stolen from Malaysia’s troubled sovereign wealth fund, prompting objections from Malaysian officials who said on Friday there was no evidence of such crimes.

The move by the United States, announced on Thursday, is part of an effort to seize luxury property, art, and other ill-gotten assets linked to fraud at the government-controlled fund, which is intended to promote economic development projects in the Asian nation.

It was the latest development in a complex money laundering scheme the Justice Department says was intended to enrich top-level officials of the fund, including some who are close to Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak.

Najib has denied wrongdoing. The prime minister’s press secretary, Tengku Sariffuddin, attacked the latest move and said: “The judicial process is not served by headline seeking.”

The Justice Department says more than $4.5bn has been stolen from the fund, known informally as 1MDB, which was created in 2009.

“This money financed the lavish lifestyles of the alleged coconspirators at the expense and detriment of the Malaysian people,” acting US Assistant Attorney General Kenneth Blanco said in a statement. Read the rest of this entry »

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Who killed Thaqif, Zulfarhan and Nhaveen? Not just the murderers but a society which allows bullies to take law into their own hands and moderates allow extremists to incite intolerance, distrust, hate and violence

In April, 11-year old Mohamad Thaqif Amin Mohd Gaddafi, a student who was beaten and abused at his tahfiz religious boarding school, died from his injuries. But not before he had both his legs amputated, was put into an induced coma and almost had to have his arm amputated as well.

It is alleged that Thaqif was beaten with a rubber hose repeatedly. His beatings caused him to get a serious bacterial infection.

On June 1, Zulfarhan Osman, 21, a third year electrical engineering student, died at the Serdang Hospital after suffering bruises and burns on his body, allegedly due to torture by his university mates.

In Penang, T. Nhaveen, 18, a teenager who was bashed up brutally by a group of teenagers using helmets as well as tortured with a sharp object penetrated into his anus, died at the Penang Hospital on Thursday after a five-day coma, was buried in tearful funeral yesterday.

What went wrong?

Are we bringing up a generation of murderers? Read the rest of this entry »

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Call on the entire Cabinet to collectively resign next Wednesday if Ministers are unable to purge Malaysia of the ignominy and infamy of the nation being regarded world-wide as a global kleptocracy

Congratulations to the sixth Prime Minister of Malaysia, Datuk Seri Najib Razak!

He has hit the international jackpot as no other incident in his seven years as Prime Minister has so dominated world headlines in the last 36 hours as his brainchild – the 1MDB monster – after the expanded United States Department of Justice (DOJ) litigation to forfeit another US$540 million of assets it alleged were stolen from 1MDB, bringing the total 1MDB assets US DOJ wants to be forfeited because of money-laundering to more than US$4.5 billion.

The latest US DOJ action has laid to rest the hopes of some in the inner Najib circle that the new US President Trump would quash the US DOJ kleptocratic action on 1MDB, as Najib boasts as Trump’s “golfing buddy” and “favourite Prime Minister” with Najib having a signed photograph of Trump on his desk.

Nobody knows whether Trump’s signed photograph would now be removed, but Trump is fighting for his political life, with the fastest worsening presidential approving rating falling below 40 per cent in the history of US Presidents and facing possible impeachment proceedings following investigation for obstruction of justice to have much time and thought for Najib and the 1MDB scandal. There is in fact a large betting market in the US as to whether Trump could finish his first term of office. Read the rest of this entry »


The US government wants a court to hand over millions of Palantir shares allegedly used in a money-laundering scheme

Business Insider
JUN. 17, 2017

The US government has filed a lawsuit asking to take ownership of 2.5 million shares of preferred Palantir stock that were allegedly caught up in Malaysia’s massive 1MDB scandal.

On Thursday, the US Department of Justice filed a lawsuit to nab a huge assortment of assets, including some of Palantir’s stock. The government says these items were bought with allegedly stolen money from Malaysia 1Malaysia Development Berhad fund (1MDB).

The 1MDB fund was set up by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak in 2009 to promote economic development. However, US authorities allege that between 2009 and 2014, billions of dollars were stolen from the fund by multiple people and then used to buy all sorts of things. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s 1MDB Fund Spawns Worldwide Probes: QuickTake Q&A

by Shamim Adam and Laurence Arnold
16th June 2017

Malaysia’s state-owned investment fund, 1MDB, was supposed to attract foreign investment. Instead, it has spurred criminal and regulatory investigations around the world that have cast an unflattering spotlight on financial deal-making, election spending and political patronage under Prime Minister Najib Razak. A Malaysian parliamentary committee identified at least $4.2 billion in irregular transactions.

1. What is 1MDB?

It’s a government investment company — full name, 1Malaysia Development Berhad — that took shape in 2009 under Najib, who went on to lead its advisory board. Its early initiatives included buying privately owned power plants and planning a new financial district in Kuala Lumpur. The fund proved better at borrowing — it accumulated $12 billion in debt — than at luring large-scale investment. Read the rest of this entry »

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1MDB Loot Included Picasso, ‘Dumb and Dumber To,’ U.S. Says

by Greg Farrell
16 June 2017

The U.S. Justice Department is seeking to recover $540 million in assets — including art works, jewelry and film rights — that it says were purchased with funds misappropriated from Malaysia’s 1MDB wealth fund.

It’s the latest attempt by the U.S. government to seize assets linked to the tainted fund, bringing the total sought by the Justice Department to $1.8 billion.

From 2009 through 2015, more than $4.5 billion belonging to 1Malaysia Development Bhd was diverted by high-level officials of the fund and their associates, according to complaints filed Thursday in the Central District of California.

The items cited in the new lawsuit as subject to seizure include a Park Avenue condominium, diamond jewelry, shares of fitness club operator Fly Wheel Sports Inc., a painting by Pablo Picasso titled “Nature Morte au Crane de Taureau” and rights to the 2014 film “Dumb and Dumber To.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia rejects US claims over assets said stolen from 1MDB

By Eileen Ng | AP
Washington Post
June 16 2017

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — A Malaysian sovereign wealth fund has rejected U.S. Justice Department allegations over money laundering and alleged theft of a treasure trove of assets including diamonds, a yacht and private jet and penthouse apartments.

The Malaysian government-controlled fund known informally as 1MDB and other officials in Kuala Lumpur insisted Friday that there was no proof linking the fund to such crimes.

On Thursday, the U.S. Justice Department filed a civil case seeking recovery of $540 million in assets that it says were stolen from 1MDB, a fund intended to promote economic development projects. Overall, the Justice Department alleges that more than $4.5 billion has been stolen from the fund. Read the rest of this entry »


Has Apandi read the ten “killer paragraphs” in US DOJ’s latest 1MDB kleptocratic suit to forfeit 1MDB-assets which directly linked Najib’s RM2.6 billion donation to 1MDB, and if so, how can he suggest that there is nothing new?

The Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohamad Apandi Ali is even faster than the former Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Idris Jala, who completed his inquiry into the five-year-old RM13 billion Felda Global Ventures Holding Berhard (FGV) crisis in less than a week.

Apandi read the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) latest 1MDB kleptocratic suit to seize 1MDB-linked assets in the United States, United Kingdom and Switzerland in a matter of hours as to be able to declare that there was nothing new and to express his regret about “insinuations” against the Prime Minister in the DOJ’s latest 1MDB forfeiture suit.

For Apandi’s information, they are not insinuations but open and direct charge by the United States Government that the Prime Minister had lied when he claimed that the RM2.6 billion donations had come from Saudi Arabian royalty!

Apandi must be quite a speed reader, but has he read the ten “killer paragraphs” in the US DOJ’s latest 1MDB kleptocratic suit to forfeit 1MDB-linked assets because of the crime of money-laundering, which as good as linked the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s RM2.6 billion “donations” to 1MDB money-laundering, debunking the claim that they were donations from Saudi Arab royalty and that US$620 million had been returned to Saudi Arabian donor. Read the rest of this entry »


Najib should make public the findings of the 1MDB Special Task Force of the four Tan Sris in July 2015 to resolve the two major financial scandals under Najib premiership – the 1MDB and FGV scandals

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, has announced that former Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Idris Jala had completed his assignment to look into the Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) crisis within a week.

The RM13 billion FELDA/FGV scandal together with the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB money-laundering scandal are the two greatest financial scandals of the seven-year Najib premiership, which Najib had promised to bring about the best democracy in the world!

I call on Najib to act with similar despatch to resolve the 1MDB scandal, which has brought to Malaysia the infamy and ignominy of being regarded worldwide as a “global kleptocracy”.

This can be done by Najib making public the findings of the 1MDB Special Task Force of the four Tan Sris which he disbanded in July 2015, for it is clear from hindsight that the 1MDB Special Task Force had done more work to get to the bottom of the 1MDB scandal than any other 1MDB probe – including the probes by the Auditor-General and the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee. Read the rest of this entry »

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US targets $540m in assets bought with 1MDB funds

David J Lynch in Washington
Financial Times
June 15, 2017

Latest move to recover money allegedly stolen from Malaysian sovereign wealth fund

The US Department of Justice on Thursday moved to seize an additional $540m in assets purchased with funds stolen from Malaysian sovereign wealth fund 1MDB, including a luxury yacht, a Picasso painting, jewellery and rights to the movie Dumb and Dumber.

The suit, which was filed in federal court in Los Angeles, is the latest move in an ambitious US effort to recover money allegedly siphoned from the fund in a sophisticated operation that ran from 2009 until 2015.

The US now estimates that a total of $4.5bn was pilfered by Malaysian public officials and their associates including Jho Low, a well-connected Malaysian businessman who held no formal role in the project. Read the rest of this entry »

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Idris Jala report on the FGV crisis should be “Tell All” and not cover-up for Najib’s ministerial failure for five years to ensure FELDA and FGV serve the 100,000 FELDA settlers and not UMNO cronies

That was fast.

Within a week, former Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Idris Jala had completed his assignment by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, to look into the Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) crisis.

This was revealed by Najib yesterday who said the Idris’ report would be announced at an appropriate time and he had also requested Idris to look into several steps and measures to solve the crisis.

Is Idris a superman or wonder worker in government transformation who could pinpoint the complex causes and solutions of the RM13 billion FGV crisis within a week?

Or were all the facts and information about the FELDA/FGV crisis in the possession of the Prime Minister’s Department, as the Prime Minister was directly responsible for FELDA/FGV affairs, and the real issue is the Prime Minster’s failure of responsibility to save FELDA and FGV in the past five years? Read the rest of this entry »

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Why UMNO leaders like Razali and Zainal treat Najib’s wasatiyah principles of moderation, justice, balance and excellence with contempt in Ramadan month by telling lies and support extremist behaviour?

We are past the midpoint of the Ramadan month and it is most regrettable that this holy month for Muslims in Malaysians to be better Muslims – just as we want non-Muslim Malaysians to be better Buddhists, better Christians, better Hindus, better Sikhs and better Taoists so as to become better Malaysians – had been marred by various incidents contrary to the values of peace, tolerance, mutual respect, goodwill and solidarity we want to inculcate among the diverse races and religions in the country.

There was firstly the voice of intolerance, distrust and even hate demanding that non-Muslims should be excluded from all buka puasa events.

Then there was the disgraceful episode at the Bazaar Ramadan Kluang where DAP MP for Kluang Liew Chin Tong was roughed up on a visit of goodwill and solidarity.

In the holy month of Ramadan, gutter politics and the politics of lies, falsehood and incitement of hatred reached new depths when Selangor DAP leader and municipal councillor Young Syefura Othman, or better known as Rara, was demonised on the social media for her visits to Ramadan bazaar in Cheras while DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Seputeh, Teresa Kok, had to lodge a police report over a false press statement released under her name in connection with a “Jerusalem’s Jubilee” event in Melaka, when she had no idea what the event was all about! Read the rest of this entry »

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Najib speech on loyalty reminds me of Trump’s demand for loyalty from ex FBI Director James Comey

When I read of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s speech yesterday on the importance of loyalty at a function of 13 uniformed services, I am reminded of United States President Donald Trump’s demand for loyalty from the former FBI Director, James Comey, whom he subsequently sacked.

Malaysians should owe loyalty to the nation, not to any individual, regardless of whether right or wrong – as the latter is the worst form of disloyalty to the nation, subordinating national interests to “loyalty” to any one person!

Today, Najib reminded social media users to spread positive news about the country and not negative ones and that they should use their influence to help instil a love for the nation.

I cannot agree more with the Prime Minister and nothing is more hurting to loyal and patriotic Malaysians than to see the country regarded in a very poor light by the international community.

This is a problem that must be addressed by the Prime Minister and the government. Read the rest of this entry »


Pakatan Harapan’s twin objectives to make Johor a frontline state in 14GE – spearhead political change in 14GE and save Malaysia from a failed and broken state

Pakatan Harapan must make Johor a front-line state with two objectives – firstly, to spearhead political change in the country in the forthcoming 14th General Election and secondly, to save Malaysia from becoming a failed and broken state.

Until five years ago, Johor was quite impenetrable for Opposition parties as it was for close to half a century, the impregnable fort of the Barisan Nasional parties – whether UMNO, MCA or MIC.

But a sea change took place in Johor in the 13th General Election. Until then, the best election result for the Opposition in Johor was one Parliamentary and six State Assembly seats in Johor in the 2008 general election, but in the 2013 General Election, the opposition Pakatan Rakyat coalition made a quantum leap and won five Parliamentary and 18 State Assembly seats – a far cry from Barisan Nasional’s “zero Opposition” goal in the 2008 general election to just one seat short of BN losing two-thirds majority in the Johor State Assembly.
Read the rest of this entry »

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DAP calls for Royal Commission of Inquiry into the tens of billions of ringgit of FGV and FELDA losses, which should include Najib’s responsibility in allowing such financial losses and scandals in the past five years

In a matter of five years, Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) suffered RM10 billion market capitalisation losses, with its share price at RM4.55 per share when it was listed in June 2012 plunging to RM1.72 per share today.

Why has FGV, which is the world’s largest plantation operator with more than two million acres of oil palms in Malaysia and in other parts of the world, suffered so badly?

FELDA Chairman Tan Sri Shahrir Abdul Samad will be meeting the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak tomorrow to discuss the best solution to resolve the FGV crisis.
Read the rest of this entry »


Regrettable that there are UMNO leaders who are defending undemocratic, violent and extremist behaviour like obstruction and roughing up of DAP MP for Kluang Liew Chin Tong when visiting Pasar Ramadan Kluang to distribute dates and spread message of harmony and solidarity

It is most regrettable that there are UMNO leaders who are defending undemocratic, violent and extremist behaviour like the obstruction and roughing up of DAP MP for Kluang, Liew Chin Tong, when visiting Pasar Ramadan Kluang to distribute dates and spread the message of harmony and solidarity.

I commend the UMNO Youth leader and Minister for Youth and Sports, Khairy Jamaluddin, for condemning such thuggish and extremist behaviour, tweeting that such behaviour is contrary to the meaning of the month of Ramadan.

It would appear that this inability to realise the meaning and significance of Ramadan also afflict some UMNO leaders, like Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department and MP for Muar, Datuk Razali Ibrahim who could defend such thuggish, violent, extremist behaviour like the roughing up of an MP going about his duties.
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Hadi’s statement about US Ambassador during the 13GE campaign most intriguing, both in content and timing

There has been a lot of publicity and attention on who will be the Prime Minister if Pakatan Harapan wins the 14th General Election.

The Pakatan Harapan candidate for Prime Minister is Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

However, as Anwar is in jail and suffer the five-year disenfranchisement from holding public office on his release from imprisonment next year until he is pardoned, Anwar can only be the eighth Prime Minister and not the seventh Prime Minister of Malaysia.

Who will be Malaysia’s seventh Prime Minister if Pakatan Harapan wins the 14th General Election will be decided by consensus of Pakatan Harapan parties when Pakatan Harapan wins the 14GE, as the focus of all Pakatan Harapan parties at present should be single-mindedly how to ensure that the UMNO-BN coalition can be defeated and replaced in the next general election. Read the rest of this entry »


Even if Malaysia ends up a failed and bankrupt state, Penang must break ranks to continue to be a successful dynamo of justice, progress and development to save Malaysia for the future

I don’t know whether to laugh or to cry when I read the Penang Barisan Nasional attacks on the DAP-led Penang State Government as leading Penang towards a failed and bankrupt state.

Are the Penang BN leaders seriously suggesting that Penang is becoming a failed and bankrupt state? That Penang is worse than Kelantan, Terengganu, Perlis, Kedah, Pahang, Malacca, Negri Sembilan or Johor?

Ask the people all over the Penang State whether Penang is becoming a failed and bankrupt state, and the answer is a categorical “No” among the overwhelming majority of Penangites, including Barisan Nasional members, except for the few Penang Barisan Nasional leaders who have eyes that see not and ears that hear not.

Ask the people all over Malaysia, whether Malaysia is in danger of being trapped in the trajectory heading towards a failed and bankrupt state, and the answer will be a categorical “Yes” among the overwhelming majority of informed Malaysians including Barisan Nasional members.

When Malaysia achieved Independence and nationhood 60 years ago, we had high hopes and great dreams for the country to be a top world-class nation, not only progressive, forward-looking and successful in all fields of human endeavor, whether political, economic, social and educational, but to be a model to the world of unity, harmony, tolerance and mutual respect in a plural nation of diverse races, religions, languages and cultures.

Apart from Japan, we were sixty years ago the richest and most economically developed country in Asia.

Since then we have been overtaken by many – Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan and unless we pull ourselves up by our bootstraps, we are in danger of being overtaken by Vietnam and Thailand, and heavens forbid, even Indonesia and the Philippines! Read the rest of this entry »


Will Najib resolve the latest crisis of public integrity and good governance concerning RM9.5 million payments from his Ambank personal banking account to Shafie over Anwar’s Sodomy II appeals to Court of Appeal and Federal Court before Hari Raya Aidilfriti?

My call to the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak to break his silence on the RM9.5 million to lawyer Tan Sri Shafie Abdullah and whether he had three other Ambank accounts at the relevant time of the payments had been strengthened three days ago have been strengthened by two developments:

• Firstly, the explanation by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Nancy Shukri that she was not privy to the arrangements made by the Attorney-General’s Chambers and that when she answered in Parliament in 2015, she was reading out the information given to her by the AG Chambers that Shafee was only paid an official sum of RM1,000 for his role as prosecutor in Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s Sodomy II case at the Court of Appeal and Federal Court; and

• Secondly, Najib’s statement at Felda Sungai Sayong, Kulai that he wants the Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) crisis to be resolved before Hari Raya Aidilfitri. Read the rest of this entry »

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