PUTRA JAYA, Malaysia (AP) – A Malaysian court on Monday began hearing an appeal by former Prime Minister Najib Razak to overturn a sentence of 12 years in prison for a massive looting of the 1MDB state investment fund that toppled his government in 2018. ,
The appeal came more than eight months after a high court found Najib guilty of abuse of power, criminal breach of trust and money laundering, making him Malaysia’s first convicted leader. He said he had been deceived by rogue bankers and that the case against him was political.
This decision was part of the first part of several corruption trials against Najib in connection with the 1MDB scandal, which has launched an investigation in the United States and several other countries. U.S. investigators say more than $ 4.5 billion was stolen from 1 MB և laundered by Najib’s colleagues.
Najib, 67, arrived at the Court of Appeal early Monday but did not speak to reporters. Najib, who formed 1MDB shortly after taking office in 2009, denied all wrongdoing, and his sentence remained pending appeal.
Last July, Najib made brief remarks under oath before being sentenced, saying he was unaware of the 42 million ringgit ($ 10 million) that had been transferred from SRC International, a former 1MDB division, to his bank accounts.
But the judge ruled that Najib’s argument that he had been deceived by Malaysian refugee financier Lau Taek-ho ho, believing that the money was part of a donation from the Saudi royal family so that Najib would not be suspected in the 1MDB robbery, was too cunning. fabrication
Investigators have found that Lowe, the mastermind of the 1MDB robbery, remains at large.
The second and third trials of Najib, involved in some of the remaining charges, are ongoing. His wife, several members of her party’s previous government, have also been charged with 1MDB corruption vaccination.