Malaysian police chief may lead team to quiz ex-PetroSaudi exec

SHAH ALAM - Former PetroSaudi International executive Xavier Andre Justo could be questioned by investigators led by Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar.

Khalid said he might lead the team to Thailand after the police there give approval for the meeting with the Swiss national who is being held for alleged blackmail.

He said he was the head of the taskforce investigating the 1Malay­sia Development Bhd (1MDB) controversy. The sovereign fund has links with PetroSaudi.

"I am also the nation's police chief. So why not? Of course I will go ... we will see," he told reporters after launching the auxiliary police cooperative yesterday.

A formal request to question Justo over the 1MDB issue has been made by the Malaysian police to its Thai counterparts who have yet to reply.

Khalid noted that his officers in the team would not be those already involved in the Thai investigation.

Justo is expected to be charged with blackmailing his former employer.

He has claimed that a group of about 10 people bought documents from him that were then used to attack Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak's credibility.

Khalid said the police could be arresting people in connection with the video confession by former Sarawak Tribune editor Lester Melanyi over documents linked to 1MDB.

He declined to comment further because the probe was still going on.

Khalid described the allegations made in the two videos as shocking, serious and needing to be thoroughly investigated.

Lester claimed in the videos that documents connected with 1MDB were falsified on the instruction of Clare Rewcastle-Brown, editor of the Sarawak Report news portal to discredit the fund and Najib.

It was promised that more videos of Lester's allegations will be released soon.

The authorities will also be looking through the large quantity of documents handed in by The Edge Media Group in connection with its news reports into the financials of 1MDB.

"We have just received them, and they will be handed to the taskforce," Khalid said.

When handing the documents over on Tuesday, the media group's chief executive officer Ho Kay Tat said they got them after meeting with someone earlier this year.

He did not say if that person was Justo but claimed the documents unravelled 1MDB's joint venture with PetroSaudi.

According to Ho, the scores of e-mail messages and attachments had been confirmed genuine by an IT forensic expert.