KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Malaysian police will request the extradition of fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho and four others if they are discovered in other countries, national police chief Mohamad Fuzi Harun said on Wednesday (Dec 5).
The five were charged in absentia on Tuesday in connection with the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) investigation at the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court.
The police issued arrest warrants for all five after the charges were filed.
Low, also known as Jho Low, was charged along with his aide Eric Tan Kim Loong, former 1MDB business development director Tang Keng Chee, former 1MDB general counsel Loo Ai Swan and former 1MDB executive director of finance Geh Choh Heng.
"They faced a total of 13 charges involving losses of US$1.17 billion (S$1.6 billion)," Tan Sri Fuzi said in a statement.
"All of them have fled the country. If they are identified to be in any country, we will request for extradition through the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC)," he said.
The Commercial Crime Investigations Department Department filed the charges in court after receiving consent from the AGC, according to Mr Fuzi.
Low, 37, faces five charges under the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001 (Amla).
The five offences involved him allegedly receiving US$1.03 billion from 1MDB through his company Good Star.
Low also faces two other joint charges with Tan, 40, under the same Act involving US$1.26 million.
Tang, 53, faces three charges. He was charged with two counts under Amla for allegedly receiving US$6.7 million.
He was also charged with one charge of criminal breach of trust under Section 409 of the Penal Code for transferring US$700 million from 1MDB to Good Star.
Loo, 45, a lawyer, was charged with two counts under Amla for receiving US$6 million.
The fifth individual, Geh, 47, faced one charge of criminal breach of trust under Section 409 of the Penal Code for allegedly transferring US$125 million from 1MDB to Good Star.
All of the offences were allegedly committed between September 2009 and July 2014.
A spokesman for Low said the businessman maintained his innocence.
"As has been previously stated, Low will not submit to any jurisdiction where guilt has been predetermined by politics and there is no independent legal process. These charges are intended to create another false sense of security for the political loss that the Mahathir regime has brought upon itself due to its failures on current issues," the spokesman said.
"It is clear that Jho Low cannot get a fair trial in Malaysia, where the regime has proven numerous times that they have no interest in the rule of law," the spokesman added.