Malaysians woke up to the shock news in Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post (SCMP) that 1MDB scandal mastermind, Penang billionaire Jho Low had stayed in an upscale Hong Kong apartment for months because Malaysia did not make a formal request to authorities there to arrest him.
The Hong Kong newspaper reported that Low and his entourage were “hiding in plain sight” by occupying multiple rooms at the upscale Pacific Place Apartments there.
Four days ago, the Inspector General of Police Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi Harun said that Jho Low was in Macau, as the Malaysian police had searched for him in Hong Kong but he had left Hong Kong when the Malaysian police arrived.
Macao does not have extradition treaties with other countries.
SCMP reported that the reason Hong Kong authorities did nothing to stop Low – despite the Interpol Red Notice – was because there was no formal request for his arrest from Malaysia.
“Hong Kong police have no obligation to arrest, even if he is on an Interpol Red Notice,” the source said.
“The only obligation is if there is an accompanying formal request from the originating country, which there wasn’t.”
Is the failure of the previous Najib government to make formal request to Hong Kong Government to arrest Jho Low the same reason why it did not stop the “the criminal conduct” in the 1MDB scandal in all its four phases from 2009 – 2014?
The “criminal conduct” in “four principal phases” from 2009 to 2014 was stated in Paragraphs 9 – 13 of the US Department of Justice (DoJ) kleptocratic litigation to forfeit 1MDBl-linked assets, which went on to give over 250 pages of details where “multiple individuals, including public officials and their associates, conspired to fraudulently divert” US$4.5 billion from 1MDB through various means, including by defrauding foreign banks and by sending them foreign wire communications in furtherance of the scheme, and thereafter, to launder the proceeds of that criminal conduct, including in and through U.S. financial institutions; where the funds diverted from 1MDB were “used for the personal benefit of the co-conspirators and their relatives and associates” including to purchase luxury real estate in the United States and overseas, pay gambling expenses at Las Vegas casinos, acquire more than US$200 million in artwork, purchase of billion-ringgit Equanimity luxury yacht, acquire the RM120 million Bombardier jet, purchase lavish gifts for family members and associates, including the RM120 million pink diamond necklace, and invest in a major New York real estate development project, and fund the production of major Hollywood films.
Despite such detailed expose of the international 1MDB money-laundering scandal, which earned Malaysia the infamy, ignominy and iniquity of a global kleptocracy in the past few years, Najib as Prime Minister-cum-Finance Minister directly and personally responsible for 1MDB, did nothing to clear Malaysia’s integrity but instead launched into a national and international charade that all reports on the 1MDB scandal were fake news and an international conspiracy against him and the UMNO/BN Government of Malaysia!
This is one of the many significant omissions in Najib’s recent interview with Malaysiakini on the 1MDB scandal.
Can Najib answer these omissions now?