Malaysia’s former prime minister faces trial in the 1MDB scandal

Mr Najib awaits his day in court

ACCORDING TO America’s Department of Justice, between 2009 and 2015 $4.5bn disappeared from 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), a Malaysian state development fund set up a decade ago by Najib Razak, then the prime minister. The money passed through a maze of institutions and accounts in the Middle East, the Caribbean and the Seychelles. It was frittered away on property, parties, gems, art, private jets and a superyacht. It helped fund a film on scamming, “The Wolf of Wall Street”. The mastermind behind the fraud is allegedly Jho Low, a Malaysian financier. But more than $600m ended up in Mr Najib’s personal bank accounts.

Mr Najib denies wrongdoing and says the money was a gift, since returned, from an unnamed Saudi royal. His claims of innocence in one of the biggest financial scandals ever are about to be put to the test. On February 12th he is due to...

via The Economist: Finance and economics Business Feeds

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