China offered to help kill investigations into 1MDB: report

In return, Malaysia offered stakes in pipeline and railway projects

TRD NEW YORK /
Jan.January 07, 2019 06:27 PM

Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and Chinese official Xiao Yaqing (Credit: Getty Images)

In 2016, Chinese leaders offered to help bail out 1MDB, the controversial Malaysian state fund that was at the center of a billion-dollar scandal, according to a new report.

China offered to use its influence to persuade the U.S. and other countries to drop their investigations into the fund and then-Prime Minister Najib Razak, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday. It further offered to bug the offices and homes of Journal reporters reporting on the fund and leak information, according to the newspaper.

In 2015, it was reported that $681 million of funds originating with 1MDB — formally 1Malaysia Development Bhd. — went to Mr. Najib’s personal bank accounts, masterminded by an alleged playboy conman named Jho Low. Najib’s office said the money was a gift from a Saudi Arabian and most of it was returned. When the U.S. Justice Department began investigated, that damaged the countries’ relationship, the report said. And helped Malaysia turn toward China.

In return for China’s bailout, Malaysia offered stakes in railway and pipeline projects for China’s One Belt, One Road program of building infrastructure abroad. Najib signed $34 billion of rail and pipeline deals with Chinese state companies, the Journal reported.

Current Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad replaced Najib in an election last May and put the Chinese projects on hold. Najib has been crimes including money laundering, which he has denied, and will face trial this year.

According to the Journal, Low, who is accused of laundering money through real estate in New York and Los Angeles, is hiding in China. [WSJ] — Meenal Vamburkar


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Jared Kushner and Jho Low (Credit: Getty Images)

Netflix’s “Dirty Money” delves into Jared Kushner, 1MDB scandal

Larkin Plaza (Credit: Rendering courtesy of SLCE Architects)

RXR project among developments caught up in alleged Gambino mob scheme

Michael Shah (Credit: iStock)

Manhattan DA drops charges against developer Michael Shah

Fotis Dulos (AP Images/ Erik Trautmann)

Developer Fotis Dulos, charged with killing his wife, is dead

Fotis Dulos (AP Images/ Erik Trautmann)

Connecticut developer charged with killing wife is rushed to hospital after apparent suicide attempt

Elsa Segura (left) was arrested in connection to realtor Monique Baugh's (right) murder (Credit: iStock)

Second suspect charged in real estate agent’s abduction, murder

Monique Baugh (Credit: Facebook)

Real estate agent abducted during showing and then murdered

Creston Apartments at 2030 Creston Avenue in the Bronx (Credit: Google Maps, iStock)

Construction firm with alleged mob ties worked on Bronx affordable housing project

arrow_forward_ios
Loading...