Hunt now narrows in on West Indies.
A Chinese official on Wednesday night denied that fugitive Jho Low had fled from Macau to the mainland.
Yesterday, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) quoted security sources as saying that the 37-year-old was believed to have travelled to China by car or private jet from Macau.
But the official, who was familiar with the case, denied that, SCMP reported.
“He definitely is not in mainland China, any claim that he is hiding in the mainland is irresponsible,” the source said.
Low, who is wanted by Malaysian authorities in connection with the 1MDB scandal, had been hiding in Macau amid intensified efforts for his arrest.
He is accused of corruption, bribery and money laundering by law enforcement agencies in several countries.
Malaysian police said they had received an email from their counterparts in Macau on July 9 confirming that Low had left the gaming hub. However, they said they did not know where Low had gone.
“It is hard to trace him as he is believed to be using multiple passports,” Inspector-General of Police Mohamad Fuzi Harun said.
The Pakatan government has cancelled Low’s Malaysian passport but he is believed to hold a passport from the tiny Caribbean island nation of St Kitts and Nevis where he reportedly has citizenship.
The search for Low is now allegedly focused on the West Indies.
“Low is a citizen of Saint Kitts and Nevis and has properties on Saint Kitts island.
“The authorities believe he is likely to head there to seek refuge as he has nowhere else to run to,” Malaysiakini reported a source as saying.
Saint Kitts is a West Indies island nation, made up of two islands and located between Barbados and Puerto Rico. It is known as a playground for the wealthy.
It also allows foreigners to obtain citizenship in return for real estate investment of at least US$400,000 or a donation of at least US$250,000 to the state’s sugar industry diversification fund.
Low is believed to have bought property there to obtain citizenship.
A Saint Kitts passport allows a citizen to travel without visa to over 140 countries.
In Saint Kitts, Low hop to many of the surrounding island countries where law enforcement is said to be lax.
Malaysia does not have an extradition treaty with many of the island nations in this region.
Jul 11, Jho Low Fled to China
Jul 4, Jho Low’s Passport Cancelled