Malaysia probes former Goldman Sachs banker to recover 1MDB funds

Malaysia is investigating a former Goldman Sachs banker who was returned to the country to help recover millions in assets after he was convicted in the United States for looting from sovereign state fund 1MDB, police said Tuesday.

The 1MDB scandal led to investigations around the world, including in the United States, Switzerland and Singapore, into the use of their financial systems to launder money.

Roger Ng, 51, was returned to Kuala Lumpur on Sunday and remains in police custody but his whereabouts are being kept secret for his safety.

“The police are investigating Roger Ng for corruption and money laundering,” Inspector General of Police Razarudin Husain told reporters Tuesday.

“We are continuing the investigations to recover the assets of 1MDB.”

If charged and found guilty, Ng, a Malaysian, could be jailed for up to 20 years.

A US court had already sentenced him to 10 years in prison in March for helping steal billions of dollars from the 1MDB fund.

US officials allowed the jail sentence to be delayed so that Ng, the ex-Goldman Sachs managing director could assist Malaysia in the investigation.

Astro Awani, a private news channel citing Razarudin, said police were attempting to secure some 93.2 million ringgit ($19.7 million) believed to be stashed in Singapore and the US.

Goldman’s involvement came under scrutiny over bond issues totalling $6.5 billion it helped arrange for 1MDB, with Malaysia claiming large amounts were misappropriated.

Cash plundered from state coffers bankrolled a global spending spree, and was used to buy everything from artwork to real estate and a superyacht.

In September, Malaysia’s prime minister Anwar Ibrahim vowed to chase a new settlement from US investment bank Goldman Sachs for its role in the billion-dollar corruption scandal.

Under that 2020 settlement, Goldman Sachs paid Malaysia $2.5 billion for its role in the financial scandal, while Kuala Lumpur agreed to end all criminal proceedings against the bank.

Goldman has always denied any wrongdoing in the case.

Former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak was ousted in 2018 and jailed for 12 years on corruption charges linked to the case.


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