Crime & Justice

Malaysian court upholds 12-year prison sentence for former prime minister

Kuala Lumpur, Aug 23 (EFE).- The Federal Court of Malaysia on Tuesday upheld the 12-year prison sentence of former Prime Minister Najib Razak in connection to embezzlement of the 1MDB state fund.

The judges of the court unanimously rejected Najib’s appeal against the conviction issued in July 2020 for the misappropriation of 42 million ringgit ($9.9 million) from 1MDB while in power.

The former leader, who ruled the country from April 2009 to May 2018 and pleads not guilty to the charges, will also have to pay a fine of 210 million ringgit.

The crimes attributed to the former leader are abuse of power and trust, and money laundering for the diversion of millions to his private accounts.

In addition, Najib faces three other trials and dozens of charges in this corruption case, which involved former Goldman Sachs bankers accused of taking bribes and laundering billions of dollars in 1MDB, according to a US judicial investigation.

Among other things, former employees of Goldman Sachs financed the production of Hollywood films such as “The Wolf of Wall Street” and purchased jewelry, luxury real estate, and even a painting by Jean-Michael Basquiat for $51 million.

The 1MDB corruption came to light in 2015, when a newspaper investigation exposed the multi-million dollar diversion from the state fund to the private accounts of Najib, the fund’s founder and then-prime minister of Malaysia.

Najib and his associates diverted $4.5 billion from the Malaysian state’s investment arm into their private accounts, a scandal that led to his fall from power in 2018. EFE


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