MACC probed Najib over US$681m of 1MDB funds for GE13 vote-buying

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MACC probe was on billions of ringgit entering Najib’s personal accounts.

Testifying as the 49th prosecution witness in Najib’s trial related to the alleged misappropriation of over RM2.2 billion in 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) funds, Senior Superintendent Nur Aida Arifin from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) detailed that Najib received wages as the Prime Minister and Finance Minister, along with allowances as a Member of Parliament and Dewan Rakyat leader.

This amounted to a total monthly income of RM78,451.74.

The MACC investigations into the misappropriation of 1MDB funds began in August 2015, with Nur Aida appointed as the investigating officer in May 2018.

On May 17, 2018, Nur Aida personally signed a complaint under Section 23 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009. This complaint is related to information regarding Najib’s alleged receipt of RM3.217 billion in 1MDB investment funds in his private AmBank account for personal interests.

During her testimony, Nur Aida revealed that her investigations indicated Najib had committed an offence under Section 23, with over RM3.63 billion entering his two private bank accounts, coded as AmPrivate Banking-MR and AmPrivateBanking-1MY. Approximately RM2.282 billion of this amount was the subject of her investigation.

Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, Najib’s lawyer, objected to Nur Aida’s testimony, stating that she was making comments and conclusions that only the court should make. The trial judge recorded the objection for later consideration and suggested that the witness rephrase her statements.

Despite objections, Nur Aida continued her testimony.

She highlighted that the US$681 million received by Najib from Tanore Finance Corporation in 2013 was allegedly used to “buy votes” in preparation for the general election. The funds were received through Falcon Private Bank Singapore and channelled into an AmPrivate Banking account ending in 694.

Tanore Finance Corporation is associated with fugitive Jho Low.

Nur Aida’s testimony aimed to corroborate the previous testimony of Bank Negara analyst Adam Ariff Mohd Roslan, who stated that Najib received over RM2.27 billion in 1MDB proceeds from 2011 to 2014.

Bernama

Najib is facing charges of abuse of power and money laundering involving RM2.27 billion from 1MDB.

In a contentious trial marked by numerous objections from Najib’s defence team, Nur Aida also revealed that on December 22, 2009, Najib issued a letter stating there was no need for the auditor-general to audit 1MDB. This directive overrode a proposal by the treasury secretary-general for 1MDB to perform due diligence following its acquisition by the federal government from the Terengganu state government in 2009.

The trial is ongoing.