Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak was found guilty today of charges involving the transfer of US$10 million into his personal bank account.
The verdict delivered in Kuala Lumpur’s high court today found him guilty of all seven charges, including alleged criminal breach of trust and money laundering.
High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan concluded that Najib was guilty of one count of abuse of power, three counts of criminal breach of trust and three counts of money laundering involving misappropriated funds totaling RM42 million (US$10 million) from SRC International Sdn Bhd, which is a subsidiary of 1Malaysia Development Berhad, or 1MDB.
Nazlan added that Najib’s defense team had failed to establish reasonable doubt for the charges against him.
“As the shadow director, Najib was entrusted with the property and with dishonest intention had misappropriated and used for himself the RM42 million.”
“I, therefore, find the accused guilty and convict the accused on all seven charges,” Mohd Nazlan ruled.
Najib faces up to 20 years’ jail for each charge. His defense team has requested mitigation which will be held on Aug. 3.
This concludes the first of Najib’s five trials in connection with the scandal centering the 1Malaysia Development Berhad sovereign fund.
The 67-year-old wrote about the trial online yesterday saying it was his “chance to clear my name.”
“Whatever the decision tomorrow at the high court, it does not end here,” he added.
Nazlan also did not support the assertion that Najib was scammed by fugitive banker Jho Low.
“It is too far fetched and self-serving to say (Najib was) conned by Jho Low,” Nazlan said.
Earlier today, thousands of Najib’s supporters gathered outside the High Court, with some showing up as early as 6.30am. Many were dressed in red, black and blue t-shirts with Najib’s face printed on them to show their support for the disgraced former prime minister.
The ongoing political scandal centered around the alleged misappropriation of up to US$4.5 billion from the 1MDB sovereign fund, which was set up by Najib in 2008 with the aim of promoting foreign investments and growing Malaysia’s economy.
Years later, a former employee of the PetroSaudi company that formed a joint venture with 1MDB leaked documents purportedly shedding light on alleged misappropriation.
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