Kee Kok Thiam, a suspect in the 1MDB case who informed local investigators about fugitive Low Taek Jho or Jho Low’s whereabouts, has died, a Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) source confirmed.
The source did so when asked to verify an obituary for Kee, a former associate of Low’s who had been deported from Macau less than a month ago.
“I can just say yes, it’s him. But I can’t confirm anything else,” the MACC source told Malay Mail.
Separately, another source with the Attorney General’s Chambers also provided indirect confirmation, saying that an investigator with the MACC also identified Kee as the same person in the obituary.
It is believed that Kee died of sudden illness.
Kee had been a pivotal witness in the local investigations of the global corruption scandal, whom Malaysian authorities arrested upon his return following his deportation from Macau for allegedly overstaying his visa.
During questioning by the MACC, he confirmed meeting Low and fellow 1MDB fugitives and suspects — Eric Tan Kim Loong, Casey Tang Keng Chee, Geh Choh Heng and Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil — in Macau.
Kee had been described as a close associate of Low, who had reportedly warned him about returning to Malaysia and helping with the investigation.
According to a report from news outlet Al Jazeera, MACC was not informed by the Macau government about Kee’s repatriation and claimed that it had known about the informant’s deportation “based on intelligence networking”.
On May 5, Malay Mail reported that an unnamed suspect was brought back with the cooperation of enforcement agencies from abroad and arrived at KLIA’s Terminal 2 on May 3 at 3.30am. This is now believed to be Kee.
Upon arrival, he was given notice of an order to be present at the MACC’s headquarters in Putrajaya at 10am on May 3, with MACC then recording his statement and searching his house on the same day.
Al Jazeera also reported the MACC as saying that several individuals had spotted Low in Macau.