PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Kim Jong Nam is believed to have had US$120,000 (S$166,000) in his possession when he was assassinated, a fact which may be linked to a mysterious meet-up with an unidentified man days before he was murdered, Asahi Shimbun reported.
Quoting Malaysian investigation officials, the Japanese daily said on Sunday (June 11) that the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un may have been paid for information.
It also added that there was no record of Jong Nam making bank withdrawals of that amount in Malaysia.
Asahi reported that police discovered four bundles of cash, each containing 300 US$100 bills, in a black bag.
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It added that Jong Nam met up with the unknown US citizen in Langkawi, days before his murder.
The man, described as a "middle-aged Korean-American based in Bangkok", was believed to have links to a US intelligence agency and had met up with Jong Nam a few times before.
The report said that Jong Nam and the American met in a hotel in Langkawi on Feb 9.
According to the news agency, a USB memory stick had been inserted into Jong Nam's laptop, which fuelled speculation that a large volume of information may have been transferred out.
Jong Nam, 45, was killed by two women who splashed his face with VX nerve agent at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 departure hall at about 9am on Feb 13 as he was about to leave for Macau.
He had arrived in Kuala Lumpur on Feb 6 from Macau where he was living with his family in exile.