GEORGE TOWN (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A three-storey bungalow in Penang owned by fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho's family has been seized by the police.
It is believed that officers from Bukit Aman's Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Prevention division visited the RM15 million (S$4.99 million) property at Tanjung Bungah Park on Thursday (March 21) to issue a notice of seizure from the Attorney General's Chambers under sub-section 4(1) of the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001.
Nobody was believed to be at home during the visit.
Dated Jan 17, 2019, the notice states: "It's hereby ordered that such immovable property be seized by the investigating officer and all dealings in respect of such immovable property are prohibited. Take notice that failure to comply with this notice is an offence under the Act."
The notice was signed by deputy public prosecutor Syafinas Shabudin.
The owner of the bungalow is Goh Gaik Ewe, 66, who is the mother of Low, also known as Jho Low.
United States prosecutors have painted Low - whose whereabouts are unknown - as the alleged mastermind of a scheme to siphon money from state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) into personal accounts disguised to look like legitimate businesses, and give some of those funds to officials as kickbacks.
Malaysia has issued warrants of arrest against Low and his associates and charged him with money laundering of over US$1 billion (S$1.35 billion) of 1MDB funds.
A spokesman for Low, through his attorneys, said in a statement that the house in Tanjung Bungah was "built and completed around twenty years ago".
"This was more than a decade before 1MDB ever existed and at that time Mr. Low was still a teenager", the spokesman said, accusing Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad of trying to score "political wins" through the seizure.