03 Aug 2020
A former Coutts & Co. banker was found guilty of failing to flag money-laundering concerns related to a $700 million transfer into an account controlled by Low Taek Jho, the alleged mastermind behind the 1MDB scandal.
The man, who was only identified as A., was fined 50,000 Swiss francs ($55,000) by the Swiss Federal Criminal Court in a ruling Friday.
“There were numerous signs that there were serious indications of money laundering, which grew over time,” the court said in a statement. “Despite being aware of these well-founded suspicions, A. left the communication” to regulatory officials “until the moment he left the bank.”
The decade-old 1MDB scandal, which led to the fall of former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, returned to the headlines this past week. Najib was found guilty of abuse of power and money laundering, while Goldman Sachs Group Inc. struck a $3.9 billion deal with Malaysia to resolve probes into the U.S. bank’s role in a scheme to plunder the Asian nation’s 1MDB investment fund.
The scandal was breathtaking for the audacity with which little known financier Jho Low built an $8-billion dollar fund intended to develop the Malaysian economy, and authorities allege that he then pilfered from the fund to fuel a spending spree on parties, sports cars, luxury properties and priceless art.
By Hugo Miller, Bloomberg, 31 July 2020
Read more at Bloomberg
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