Low Taek Jho, more familiarly known as Jho Low, the central figure in Malaysia’s 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), has declared his innocence in the midst of criminal charges in connection to 1MDB filed this week against US finance giant Goldman Sachs.
Since Low, a Malaysian financier, is currently at large, he declared his innocence through a spokesman, Wells Haslem Mayhew Strategic Public Affairs co-CEO Benjamin Haslem, his legal representatives, on Monday, December 17. The statement was also published on Low’s website.
STATEMENT REGARDING MALAYSIAN AUTHORITIES FILING CRIMINAL CHARGES AGAINST GOLDMAN SACHS AND OTHERS – 17 DECEMBER 2018
“Mr. Low maintains his innocence. As has been stated previously, Mr. Low will not submit to any jurisdiction where guilt has been predetermined by politics and there is no independent legal process.
It is clear that Mr. Low cannot get a fair trial in Malaysia, where the regime has proven numerous times that they have no interest in the rule of law.”
This week, Malaysia’s Attorney General, Tommy Thomas, declared that the government will be seeking billions in fines and jail terms for Goldman Sachs and four other people for reportedly channeling RM 11.3 billion (S$3.7 billion) from 1MDB.
The people named in the charges are Low, former Goldman Sachs banker Roger Ng, former Goldman Sachs Southeast Asia chairman Tim Leissner, and former 1MDB employee Jasmine Loo.
Media outfits are reporting that this is the first time that American multinational financial services company and investment bank Goldman Sachs has been criminally charged in connection to 1MDB.
Goldman Sachs has also denied culpability in the matter. A spokesman for the bank has said that Goldman Sachs promised complete cooperation in investigations into the case and that the bank would defend itself to the fullest extent against charges leveled against it.
The finance giant has been under intense scrutiny for having helped raised US $6.5 billion (S$ 8.9 billion) via several bond offerings for 1MDB, now under investigation in six countries.
The Department of Justice in the United States said that from 2009 to 2014, high-ranking officials of 1MDB had misappropriated around US$4 billion (S$ 5.49 billion) from the fund.