A report in a Malaysian Chinese-language newspaper alleges that the fugitive financier behind Malaysia’s enormous 1MDB fund scandal, Jho Low, is believed to be residing in China.
Sin Chew Daily, citing unnamed sources, reported that Jho spends his time traveling between Hong Kong, Macau, Shanghai, Shenzen, Beijing, and Hainan, despite having had his Malaysian passport canceled last year.
Royal Malaysia Police have stepped up efforts in recent months to locate Jho, working together with China’s Public Security Bureau, to no avail. As the trial of former prime minister, Najib Razak kicks off this month, authorities are eager to track down the financier many say was the mastermind behind the alleged siphoning of funds from the sovereign wealth scheme, into the personal coffers of the former leader, as well as his own.
An Interpol red alert has been issued for Jho; however, he has managed to evade detection until now. Political observers have speculated that a visit by Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad to China later this month for the Belt and Road Summit will be punctuated by his request for more assistance to bring Jho to justice.
While his Malaysian passport may have been voided, it is believed that Jho has a Hong Kong residence card, and operates a company based in the city’s Central district.
Low’s nebulous role in the 1MDB scandal means that he is also wanted for questioning by Singaporean authorities, and the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation.