IN Kuwait, a court has convicted businessperson Low Taek Jho @ Jho Low, in absentia for money laundering charges in relation to the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scandal and sentenced him to 10 years’ imprisonment together with a sheikh, his partner, and another foreigner, while a lawyer was sentenced to seven years jail.
In the US, jury selection in the trial of Grammy-winning musician Pras Michel began in Washington in a trial alleging that he played a role in the 1MDB scandal, which could see Michel sent behind bars for decades.
Last week, a court in New York rejected claims by former Goldman Sachs banker Roger Ng that he was unable to forfeit US$35.1 mil (RM155.4 mil) as the Malaysian government had taken “all of his money”.
US district judge Margo Brodie said the amount imposed “is not constitutionally excessive” and that she is required under the law to order the penalty.
She added that Ng was “wilfully engaged” in the 1MDB financial scandal. Ng had been sentenced to 10 years in prison over his role in the scandal.
It will be many years before Malaysia can live down the ignominy and infamy of the 1MDB scandal and stop being regarded as a kleptocratic state, but this is the objective for any responsible and honest Malaysian government, which requires an all-out war against corruption on all fronts and full commitment to ensure good governance in Malaysia.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has commendably appointed the former second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani, to head a task force to investigate the unsatisfactory US$2.5 bil settlement between Goldman Sachs and the government, when the settlement could be 200% higher.
Johari’s task force should be empowered to investigate other unsatisfactory 1MDB scandal deals concluded by previous governments, like the 1MDB-International Petroleum Investment Company settlement, and the task force should present its first report to the May/June meeting of Parliament. — March 29, 2023
Retired DAP supremo and former Iskandar Puteri MP Lim Kit Siang, 82, has a colourful political career spanning 57 years.
The views expressed are solely of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Focus Malaysia.
Main photo credit: Malaysiakini