Najib Razak, who served as Malaysia’s PM from 2009 to 2018, was found guilty of money laundering, abuse of power and other charges in 2020. He will now begin a 12-year jail sentence. Najib has consistently denied wrongdoing but his final route to appeal was rejected Tuesday by a five-judge panel at Malaysia’s High Court.
The charges were related to the onetime sovereign wealth fund, which prosecutors alleged he and his allies used as a personal piggybank to support luxurious lifestyles and fund electioneering. The former PM was also fined 210 million Malaysian ringgit ($46.94 million)
The former PM was also fined 210 million Malaysian ringgit ($46.94 million).
The 1MDB fund was created soon after Najib took office in 2009. The government pumped billions in public money into it, with the stated purpose of leading “market-driven initiatives to assist the government in propelling Malaysia towards becoming a developed nation that is highly competitive, sustainable and inclusive.”
Instead, according to United States prosecutors, 1MDB was used as a slush fund by Najib and other high-ranking officials at the fund. Billions of dollars of taxpayers’ money were funneled and embezzled out of Malaysia, prosecutors said.