US$61m, £9.46m transferred into Najib’s personal accounts – witness

KUALA LUMPUR • A bank officer told the High Court yesterday that Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak received US$61 million and £9.46 million through overseas money transfers into two of his personal Ambank accounts from three companies allegedly linked to fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho or Jho Low.

SWIFT Unit Division manager at Ambank (M) Berhad Wedani Senen, 48, said all transactions involved the 2112022009694 account under code name AmPrivate Banking – MR and 2112022011880 code-named AmPrivate Banking – 1MY, belonging to the former prime minister between March 2013 and Dec 2014.

The 29th prosecution witness said there was a transfer transaction amounting to US$61 million into Najib’s account ending in 694 (AmPrivate Banking-MR) from Tanore Finance Corporation.

Previously, Tanore was identified as one of the entities that received illegal money from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and allegedly had links with Jho Low’s associate, Eric Tan Kim Loong.

Wedani added £750,000 was transferred into Najib’s AmPrivate Banking – 1MY account by Blackrock Commodities (Global) Limited on June 23, 2014.

“The same account also received money from Vista Equity International Partners Ltd (Barbados) through five transactions namely £5,750,000 (Oct 19, 2014); £694,343.62 and £2,216.01 (Nov 24, 2014); £995,000.00 (Dec 5, 2014) and £1.26 million (Dec 18, 2014),” the witness told the court.

Wedani said this when reading out her witness statement at Najib’s trial involving the misappropriation of RM2.3 billion from 1MDB funds.

The United States Department of Justice (DoJ) had identified Vista Equity and Blackrock Commodities as ‘shell companies’ (companies that only existed on paper) that were also alleged to have ties to Tan.

Meanwhile, when she was cross-examined by Najib’s lawyer, Wan Aizuddin Wan Mohammed, the witness said she did not make any report to Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) on the transactions into the Pekan Member of Parliament’s accounts.

“Our unit does not make any report as other divisions are tasked to manage reporting to BNM.

“I am also not sure whether BNM has issued any warning and asked the bank to explain all transactions involving the large sum of money,” she said.

The trial before Judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah continues today. — Bernama