KUALA LUMPUR: Mala­ysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak was hit with new charges on Wednesday linked to a multi-billion-dollar financial scandal that contributed to his shock election defeat in May.

Appearing at a court in Kuala Lumpur, Najib was charged with three counts of money-laundering over claims he pocketed 42 million ringgit ($10.3 million) from a former unit of scandal-hit sovereign wealth fund 1MDB.

These are in addition to the charges he faced last month after he was first arrested — three for criminal breach of trust and a separate count that he abused his position to take the money.

The 65-year-old, who is free on bail, has denied all the charges.

Malaysia’s new government is probing allegations that billions of dollars were looted from 1MDB, which was set up and overseen by Najib, in an audacious fraud that spanned the globe.

Najib is facing a long time behind bars if found guilty — the money-laundering charges carry maximum jail terms of 15 years each, while the other four charges carry sentences of 20 years each.

The money-laundering cha­­r­ges allege 42 million ringgit stemming from illegal activities was transfer­red to Najib’s bank accounts between December 2014 and February 2015.

All the charges relate to fund transfers from SRC International, an energy company that was originally a subsidiary of 1MDB.

The sums involved are just a fraction of the $681 million that was mysteriously transferred to Najib’s personal bank accounts several years ago, sparking uproar in Malaysia.

The then attorney general — who had ties to Najib’s party — cleared the leader of wrongdoing, and said that the money had been a donation from the Saudi royal family.

Published in Dawn, August 9th, 2018

Opinion

Crisis looming
Updated 21 Oct 2021

Crisis looming

It will be a terrible mistake for the PM, his acolytes to underestimate the strength of the wave that is about to hit them.
An eye-opener
21 Oct 2021

An eye-opener

A daring report by Indian savants could have been written here.
Past, present, forever
Updated 20 Oct 2021

Past, present, forever

Despite their close relationship, this is hardly the first time the PTI and the military have not been BFFs.

Editorial

Not just cricket
Updated 21 Oct 2021

Not just cricket

Hype surrounding the match — sold out as soon as tickets sales opened — has overshadowed the other games, as well as other teams.
Local governance
21 Oct 2021

Local governance

The court ruling restoring local institutions in Punjab should go a long way in ensuring the continuation of grassroots democracy.
21 Oct 2021

Breast cancer awareness

LIKE so many other issues relating to women’s health in Pakistan, breast cancer is not a subject of serious...
Opposition’s chance?
Updated 19 Oct 2021

Opposition’s chance?

What the opposition can do is take advantage of the cleavage between PTI and the establishment, perhaps widen it and leverage it.
Evading tax laws
Updated 20 Oct 2021

Evading tax laws

Challenge of tax compliance can't be dealt with without directly taxing incomes irrespective of source and punishing tax evaders.
19 Oct 2021

KCR delays

AS political and bureaucratic stakeholders drag their feet over reviving the Karachi Circular Railway, residents of...