Fugitive Jho Low now claims 1MDB billions were “loans” to him

Fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho has claimed that millions of dollars siphoned from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), Malaysia’s debt-ridden state fund, were merely loans to him.

He went on to blame former prime minister Najib Razak for the downfall of the fund.

The businessman, more commonly known as Jho Low, made the claims in conversations with a Malaysian government representative. Al Jazeera aired these claims in a documentary it published on the 17th of November.

“All these ultimately were loans, directly or indirectly, but, ultimately, I think the time has come, we want to assist in repatriating these assets back in return for cooperating and moving on with life without, you know, being prosecuted,” he says.

However, a former FBI special agent involved in the 1MDB investigation, Debra LaPrevotte, dismisses Low’s claim. He insists that if there were no wrongdoing, firstly, Jho Low would not want to return assets. Secondly, these assets would not have been seized in the first place.

A lawyer for Najib, Muhammad Farhan Muhammad Shafee, told the Free Malaysia Today news site in a text message: “Of course he will sing to whatever tune that can save himself! A self-serving statement such as this should be taken with a shovel of salt.”

Low’s revelations during the calls appeared to be a bid to bargain for his freedom. He has been a fugitive from the law in both Singapore and Malaysia since 2016. Low has two Interpol red notices and a US arrest warrant against him.

Former PM Najib Razak demands Goldman Sachs to handover 1MDB documents.

In what can be seen as another twist, the former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak is asking a U.S. court to let his lawyers seek documents and testimony from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. These documents are to help in his defence against criminal charges in Malaysia over the 1MDB scandal.

In a filing on Tuesday in federal court in Manhattan, Najib requested a court order that would permit his attorneys to serve subpoenas on the company and its former Southeast Asia chair, Tim Leissner. Leissner has pleaded guilty in federal court in Brooklyn, New York. He admitted to bribing officials in Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates to get bond deals for the bank. Goldman Sachs has agreed to pay more than $5 billion, including a record $2.3 billion fine in the U.S., and enter its first-ever guilty plea for its role in the scandal.

jho low pervert
Jho Low during one of his parties with Paris Hilton

Tim Leissner is the husband of celebrity fashion designer, Kimora Lee Simmons. It is purported that Jho Low had introduced the two while they were all partying in the early 2000s.

Goldman spokesman Andrew Williams didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment on Najib’s request. Henry Mazurek, a lawyer for Leissner, declined to comment on the filing.

Jho Low: From Billion Dollar Whale to Slippery Eel

Malaysia has cancelled Jho Low’s passport since 2016. The Caribbean island of St Kitts and Nevis has also deactivated his passport. However, Al Jazeera cited flight records showing Low’s extensive travel footprint. These travel included moving from Bangkok to Dubai via India as recent as November 2019 on a privately chartered flight. The Al Jazeera documentary reveals Jho Low is using yet another passport. This time by the Caribbean nation of Grenada.

Bill McMurry, another former FBI special agent who led the 1MDB investigation, says, “This was only possible through corruption and extremely high-level government assistance”.

According to the report, Low has been living in Macau, an autonomous administrative region of China, since 2018.

Visit the link here to view the documentary by Al Jazeera.

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