PROMINENT Umno lawyer Shafee Abdullah has not responded to the Sarawak Report expose that he received RM9.5 million related to troubled state investor 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) from Prime Minister Najib Razak’s personal account.
Sarawak Report claimed to have obtained documents showing that Shafee had received the sum in two transactions from an AmBank account that was previously identified as belonging to Najib.
Shafee, who has acted in high profile cases involving top politicians here, did not respond to calls nor did he reply to messages left on his phone by The Malaysian Insight.
It was previously reported that the funds in Najib’s account had originated from 1MDB subsidiary SRC International, which had taken a RM4 billion loan from civil service pension fund Kumpulan Wang Amanah Pencen (KWAP).
The first transfer from Najib’s account to Shafee amounted to RM4.3 million and was done on 11 September 2013. The second one occurred on 17 February 2014 and totalled RM5.2 million, the whistleblower site wrote on Wednesday.
The site also posted screenshots of the documents which showed the lawyer’s name, his bank account number and the two transfers.
“These payments came at extremely sensitive moments relating to the lawyer and Najib and provoke immediate questions about why the prime minister was paying this particular lawyer such very large sums of illegitimate money?” Sarawak Report wrote.
“Quite apart from the illegality of the source there are also potential glaring conflicts of interest.”
It is estimated that Najib’s brain child 1MDB had racked up RM39.8 billion in debts and lost an additional RM39 billion in shady deals and outright fraud.
It triggered money laundering and fraud probes in the US, UK, Switzerland, Singapore, Hong Kong and Luxembourg.
The US Department of Justice has filed a civil suit claiming that US$1 billion had allegedly been stolen from 1MDB and used to buy luxury properties, hotels and artwork in the US.
Investigations have also been started on money that was siphoned off from SRC International and which flowed into Najib’s AmBank account.
It was reported that RM42 million allegedly stolen from SRC International made its way into Najib’s account between December 2014 and February 2015 via its subsidiaries, Gandingan Mentari Sdn Bhd and a separate company, Ihsan Perdana Sdn Bhd.
Ihsan Perdana was a private company set up to manage 1MDB’s “corporate social responsibility” contributions.
Pakatan Harapan MP Tony Pua also claimed that RM67 million of SRC International’s funds had been illegally transferred to Najib.
Najib has denied all wrong doing while Attorney General Apandi Ali has also exonerated the prime minister.
THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT