Jho Low a 'person of interest' in S'pore's 1MDB-linked probe

Jho Low a 'person of interest' in S'pore's 1MDB-linked probe

THE Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) said yesterday that it is investigating elusive Malaysian tycoon Low Taek Jho, also known as Jho Low, his close business associate Eric Tan Kim Loong and Mohamed Ahmed Badawy Al Husseiny in relation to money laundering linked to scandal-hit Malaysian state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

CAD investigation officer Oh Yong Yang told the court on day eight of the trial of former BSI banker Yeo Jiawei that the three men are "persons of interest" in the CAD's probe of the "complex, sophisticated and largest money laundering case involving billions of dollars in transactions" linked to 1MDB.

The men, among others, are also being investigated in other jurisdictions, Mr Oh said. Mr Low and Mr Tan have been the subject of the CAD probe since last year, he added.

Mr Al Husseiny, an American, is the former chief executive of Aabar Investments, a unit of International Petroleum Investment, an Abu Dhabi government fund.

He has been detained by the Abu Dhabi authorities and is awaiting extradition on 1MDB-related charges, media reports say.

Mr Oh told the court that entities Aabar Investments PJS Ltd (Samoa) and Aabar International Investments PJS Ltd (BVI), along with two others - Aabar Investments PJS (Seychelles) and Aabar Investments PJS (BVI) - featured in the CAD's investigations involving Yeo, Mr Tan, Mr Low, Mr Al Husseiny and others.

Read also: Accused was messenger, says lawyer

Yeo, who is on trial for four counts of obstructing justice, allegedly told Amicorp Group employee Jose Renato Carvalho Pinto how to structure funds for entities supposedly linked to the legitimate Aabar Investments PJS, a unit of Abu Dhabi state fund International Petroleum Investment.

When asked by the prosecution if these entities were linked to the legitimate Aabar Investments PJS, Mr Oh said: "CAD has strong reasons to believe the four companies aren't related to the sovereign wealth fund."

Yeo is the first of four Singaporeans implicated in the saga to go on trial. The nine-day trial ends today.

He also faces seven other charges of cheating, forgery and money laundering, which will be heard next year.

gleong@sph.com.sg


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