First of Najib’s Trials Hinge on Whether He Knew of 1MDB Sum

First of Najib’s Trials Hinge on Whether He Knew of 1MDB Sum(Bloomberg) — Najib Razak engaged in a “planned, premeditated criminal breach of trust case” that ran over many years, prosecutors said in the first of two trials investigating Malaysia’s former prime minister’s involvement in the corruption scandal that has enveloped troubled state fund 1MDB.This case, which will soon draw to a close, hinges on whether he knew the $10 million deposited in his accounts came from a former unit of 1MDB, with his lawyers arguing there’s no link between the funds and decisions he took as the country’s leader.Najib’s defense said prosecutors haven’t shown evidence that he had a “corrupt intent” to take the 42 million ringgit ($10 million) found in his personal account, which was allegedly siphoned from SRC International Sdn., a former 1MDB unit. The lawyers also argued there was no link between the sum and Najib’s decisions related to SRC, which they said would mean the funds don’t constitute a bribe.Prosecutors argued that it’s “incredible” for Najib to say he wasn’t aware of the sum sent to his personal accounts since he made no police reports and didn’t sue the bank for wrongful deposit.That Najib later issued checks from those accounts showed he knew the money was there, prosecutors said, adding “such an assumption can only be made by the accused if he knew that funds were being pumped into his account unless of course the accused believed that the money in his personal account grew on trees.”Key TestBoth sides read out their case submissions on Tuesday. The judge will decide on Nov. 11 whether to have Najib’s lawyers summon their witnesses or strike out the charges.This case will serve as a key test of Malaysia’s ability to get to the bottom of the 1MDB scandal. Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad returned to power last year on a pledge to recover funds lost through the troubled state fund and bring those responsible to justice.Najib is accused of receiving the funds allegedly from SRC in exchange for approving a government guarantee on 4 billion ringgit of loans from Kumpulan Wang Persaraan (Diperbadankan) to SRC. The charges involve local transactions, meaning the evidence is easier to trace compared with other allegations against him that involve 1MDB’s overseas deals spanning multiple jurisdictions.Jho LowThe role of fugitive financier Low Taek Jho, better known as Jho Low, was discussed in the case submissions Tuesday. Najib’s lawyers said that the funds were deposited in the former premier’s accounts for Low’s interests, while prosecutors argued that Low acted on behalf of Najib and gained nothing from arranging the transactions.Low faces his own set of criminal charges in Malaysia and the U.S. for his alleged role in 1MDB. He has denied any wrongdoing.(Updates with case submission from prosecution side throughout.)To contact the reporter on this story: Hadi Azmi in Kuala Lumpur at klnews@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ruth Pollard at rpollard2@bloomberg.net;Yudith Ho at yho35@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

Harry Dunn: Government knew American suspect was leaving UK

Harry Dunn: Government knew American suspect was leaving UKThe UK government was warned by the US embassy that the suspect in the crash which killed Harry Dunn was to leave the country. Mr Dunn, 19, was killed when his motorbike collided with a car near RAF Croughton, Northants, on Aug 27. Anne Sacoolas, the wife of an American diplomat, has admitted to driving on the wrong side of the road and hitting the teenager, but she returned to the US and has refused to come back. Dominic Raab, the Foreign Secretary, told the Commons last night that the US embassy alerted them to Ms Sacoolas's "imminent" departure "unless the UK had strong objections" on Sept 13. Police were unable to arrest Ms Sacoolas as the US had not waived her diplomatic immunity. "We duly and immediately objected in clear and strong terms and we have done ever since," said Mr Raab. When the Foreign Office followed up on Sept 16, the embassy said Ms Sacoolas had returned to the US. Mr Dunn's family spokesman said the revelation "added insult to injury". Harry Dunn died in August but the driver of the car that hit him has not returned to the UK to face questioning Credit: Facebook The Foreign Secretary said the case had been raised at "every level" in the US, including with Donald Trump. In a statement, Mr Raab said: "I have already commissioned a review of the immunity arrangements of US personnel and their families at the Croughton annex I do not believe the current arrangements are right and the review will look at how we can make sure they cannot be used in this way again." Mr Raab said diplomatic immunity for Ms Sacoolas has "clearly ended". "There are no barriers to justice being done," in Harry's case he added. Harry's parents were due to meet Northamptonshire Chief Const Nick Adderley on Tuesday, but cancelled because they felt he was only able to offer condolences rather than solutions.