Najib Razak pleads not guilty to money laundering charges

Najib Razak pleads not guilty to money laundering charges

As the charges were read out in a packed courtroom in Kuala Lumpur, Razak responded: "I understand". Last month he pleaded not guilty to abuse of power and breach of trust charges.

Last month, Najib was arrested and charged with abuse of power and criminal breach of trust related to an alleged transfer of RM42 million (S$14 million) into his personal bank account from SRC International, a former unit of 1MDB.

Each of the three money-laundering charges carried a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison and a fine of up to five times of the ill-gotten wealth.

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On the three charges, Najib was alleged to have received RM27 million, RM5 million and RM10 million, respectively, which were proceeds from unlawful activities, via Real Time Electronic Transfer of Funds and Securities (Rentas) into two AmIslamic Bank Berhad accounts of his bearing the numbers 2112022011880 and 2112022011906.

He appeared at the MACC office in Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday after he was summoned by the anti-graft agency.

The prosecution team, led by Datuk Mohamad Hanafiah Zakaria, applied to have it heard together with the previous charges before another High Court.

He has pleaded not guilty to the charges and was released after posting bail.

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Najib had founded 1MDB and headed its advisory board.

1MDB was set up by Najib in 2009 to spur Malaysia's economic development.

The charges are related to 42m ringgit (US$10m).

After taking office, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, reopened an investigation into 1MDB and prevented Najib and his wife, Rosmah Mansor, from leaving the country.

Police also seized jewellery and valuables valued at more than 1.1 billion ringgit (£208m) from properties linked to Mr Najib.

Earlier this week, Indonesia handed over to Malaysia a $250 million superyacht that had been impounded following claims by the U.S. Department of Justice that it was purchased by fugitive Malaysian financier Low Taek Jho with funds siphoned off from 1MDB.

The US Justice Department, which is seeking to recover items allegedly bought with stolen 1MDB cash in America, estimates that Dollars 4.5 billion in total was looted from 1MDB.

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