1MDB: Witness Statements Indicate A High-Level Conspiracy To Mislead Najib

From the number of statements made by Jasmine Loo during the course of her taking the witness stand, it is obvious that the top level management and certain parties involved with 1MDB would keep former Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak in the dark about some of the dealings and used his name as purportedly giving approval to some of the project developments.

KUALA LUMPUR – The court was told today that the top management of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) were behind the decision to propose an acquisition of Tanjong Energy Holdings Sdn Bhd (TEHSB) with a RM10.6bil bid, in consultation with Goldman Sachs, said prosecution witness, Jasmine Loo Ai Swan.

The final decision was made by the full board of directors after being briefed by the management.

The 50th prosecution witness said this during cross-examination by counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah at the trial of former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak involving RM2.3bil of 1MDB funds.

Passed to Jho Low

Loo, who was the former legal Counsel for 1MDB, also said that she had prepared the shareholder resolution and passed it to fugitive businessman, Low Taek Jho or Jho Low, to obtain Najib’s approval.

However, the resolution, purportedly with Najib’s signature was nowhere to be found among the exhibits for evidence, nor is it with the prosecution.

In 2019, former 1MDB chief executive officer Datuk Shahrol Azral Ibrahim Halmi, testified that Najib had approved the proposal in February 2012.

Shahrol Azral also told the court that 1MDB Energy Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of 1MDB, had acquired TEHSB at a bid price of RM10.6bil and Najib had signed the document in his capacity as a special shareholder, through the Ministry of Finance Incorporated.

He said he was also confident that Najib, who was finance minister at that time, was aware of the details of the transaction, based on the talking points given by Jho Low via email and BlackBerry Messenger.

Goldman Sachs Was Financial Adviser For 1MDB And Usaha Tegas

Earlier, when questioned by co-defence counsel, Tania Scivetti, Loo affirmed that financial institution Goldman Sachs was acting as financial advisers for two companies, namely 1MDB and Usaha Tegas, a company under Tan Sri Ananda Krishnan.

Tania then asked about the conflict of interest as a 1MDB subsidiary was involved in the bid to acquire TEHSB, a subsidiary of Usaha Tegas.

“Did you not see this as a conflict of interest?” Tania asked seeing as she was the legal advisor for 1MDB and should have advised the Board of Directors as such.

Loo replied that it was public knowledge that Goldman Sachs was a financial adviser to Ananda Krishnan as well as 1MDB, thus there was no need to advise further.

Najib, 70, faces four charges of using his position (as prime minister) to obtain bribes, totalling RM2.3bil from 1MDB funds, and 21 charges of money laundering involving the same amount.

The trial, before Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah, continues on Thursday (April 4). – NMH

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