Witness: RM10.6 bln acquisition of Tanjong Energy decided by 1MDB’s management

Witness: RM10.6 bln acquisition of Tanjong Energy decided by 1MDB’s management

KUALA LUMPUR (April 3): The High Court today was told that the proposal of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) for the acquisition of Tanjong Energy Holdings Sdn Bhd (TEHSB), at a bid price of RM10.6 billion, was the decision of the top management of 1MDB, in consultation with Goldman Sachs.

The final decision was by the full board of directors, after being briefed by the management.

1MDB’s former general counsel, Jasmine Loo Ai Swan, 50, said that the former prime minister, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, who was the chairman of the 1MDB board of advisers, did not give any directives pertaining to the proposal, nor the final decisions.

The 50th prosecution witness said this during cross-examination by counsel, Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, at the trial of Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s corruption and money laundering trial, involving RM2.3 billion of 1MDB funds.

Muhammad Shafee: Did Najib say it was his decision (on the proposal)?

Loo: No, I don’t believe he had said that.

Muhammad Shafee: He did not direct the decision, am I right?

Loo: Yes, true.

Loo also said that she had prepared the shareholder resolution and passed it to fugitive businessman, Low Taek Jho or Jho Low, to obtain Najib’s approval.

In 2019, former 1MDB chief executive officer (CEO), Datuk Shahrol Azral Ibrahim Halmi, testified that Najib had approved the proposal in February 2012.

Shahrol Azral also told the court that 1MDB Energy Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of 1MDB, had acquired TEHSB at a bid price of RM10.6 billion, and Najib had signed the document in his capacity as a special shareholder, through the Ministry of Finance Incorporated (MOF Inc).

He was also confident that Najib, who was holding the portfolio of finance minister at that time, was aware of the details of the transaction, based on the talking points given by the fugitive businessman, Low Taek Jho or Jho Low, via email and BlackBerry Messenger (BBM).

Najib, 70, faces four charges of using his position (as prime minister) to obtain bribes, totalling RM2.3 billion, from 1MDB funds, and 21 charges of money laundering involving the same amount.

The trial, before Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah, continues tomorrow.

– Bernama

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