Report on $943m funds

WSJ releases 9 documents on alleged money trail

The 1MDB logo is seen on a billboard.
The 1MDB logo is seen on a billboard. PHOTO: AFP

PETALING JAYA • Nine documents detailing how almost US$700 million (S$943 million) in 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) funds allegedly ended up in Prime Minister Najib Razak's personal bank accounts were released by the Wall Street Journal yesterday.

The documents, which the newspaper said came from a "Malaysian government investigation", were published on the WSJ's website.

They showed alleged bank transfers from various companies to Datuk Seri Najib's personal accounts in March 2013, December last year and February this year.

A letter dated Jan 20 last year regarding power of attorney over three bank accounts under AmIslamic Bank Berhad was also published on the WSJ website.

However, some details, such as the last five digits of the AmIslamic accounts said to belong to the Prime Minister, had been blanked out, along with some other details in the documents.

NO BETRAYAL

Even if I wanted to steal, surely I would not have kept the money in a Malaysian account. As the Prime Minister, I will never betray the Malaysian public. I will decide in a few days what further action I will take against the malicious allegations.

PRIME MINISTER NAJIB RAZAK, denying taking any funds for personal gain

This came as Umno lawyers are reported to be in the midst of preparing their case against Dow Jones, the publisher of WSJ, over its report implicating the Prime Minister in an alleged money trail before filing a suit in the United States.

The lawyers are also said to be consulting New York-based lawyers who specialise in defamation cases.

"We are still preparing the legal work before we send our letters to Dow Jones," a source said.

Mr Najib has denied taking any funds for personal gain and accused former premier Mahathir Mohamad of being responsible for the latest "lie".

"Even if I wanted to steal, surely I would not have kept the money in a Malaysian account," he told reporters on Sunday.

"As the Prime Minister, I will never betray the Malaysian public," he added.

Since the WSJ report broke last Friday, Mr Najib has been urged by his party leaders, including Umno deputy president Muhyiddin Yassin, who is also Deputy Prime Minister, to sue the WSJ to clear his name and restore the credibility of his government.

"I will decide in a few days what further action I will take against the malicious allegations," he said on Sunday.

The WSJ has said it stood by its report and possessed "solid" documents to back its claim.

Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail confirmed that he had seen the documents relating to the case.

THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 08, 2015, with the headline 'WSJ releases nine documents on alleged money trail'. Print Edition | Subscribe