1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) today filed a court order seeking to expedite the sale of the superyacht Equanimity.
1MDB, its two subsidiaries, 1MDB Energy Holidings Limited and 1MDB Global Investment Limited, and the government named the owner of the ship, Equanimity of Cayman Islands, as the defendant in the suit filed via the law firm of Jeremy Joseph & Partners.
In the notice of application, the four plaintiffs are asking for the sale of the ship, bunkers, fuel, lubricants and other consumables on board to be conducted via public tender or private treaty by the Admiralty Court sheriff.
The firms want the sheriff to receive bids or offers for the vessel and the bunkers and for the purchase price to be paid to the sheriff in US dollars or euros or ringgit.
The firms said the proceeds of the sale of the vessel should be paid into court and placed in a bank account in Malaysia as approved by the Accountant-General.
“The sheriff and/or the plaintiffs should be authorised to arrange and pay for the repatriation of the master, officers and crew of the vessel,” they said.
The firms also said that the ship was also physically deteriorating as it was exposed to the elements of the sea and weather and it was in the interest of all parties that the vessel was sold as soon as possible to avoid further diminution of the value of the vessel.
“The diminution will cause hardship on the plaintiffs as the value of the vessel has already depreciated and the continuing costs of maintaining her arrest will only reduce the amount to be recovered,” they said.
A writ of summons was issued on Aug 6 to the “owner of the vessel”, as well as to Wilson Yacht Management Ltd, the company that operates the Equanimity.
The hearing of the application has been fixed for tomorrow and it would be followed by a press conference.
The superyacht was brought to Malaysia on Aug 7 after the Indonesian authorities handed it to Malaysia.
It was seized off Bali in February at the request of the US authorities as part of the corruption investigation launched by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) into 1MDB.