KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 21 — After having received over RM2.2 billion of funds originating from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) in his two personal AmIslamic bank accounts in 2011 until June 2014, former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak in late 2014 received RM45.8 million of money originating from a 1MDB subsidiary’s US$975 million bank loan, money trails based on bank documents have shown.
At the High Court here, Bank Negara Malaysia analyst Adam Ariff Mohd Roslan today gave a detailed analysis of how 1MDB subsidiary 1MDB Energy Holdings Limited’s (1MEHL) US$975 million borrowed from Deutsche Bank was passed through two fake Aabar companies and a company owned by Malaysian fugitive Low Taek Jho’s associate Eric Tan Kim Loong before a small portion totalling RM45.8 million reached Najib in a matter of four months.
Adam Ariff was testifying as the 47th prosecution witness in Najib’s trial, where the former finance minister is facing 25 charges over RM2.28 billion of 1MDB funds said to have entered his private bank accounts.
Based on bank documents, 1MEHL in September 2014 asked Deutsche Bank to let it borrow US$500 million and US$475 million, with the total loan being US$975 milion.
1MEHL also asked Deutsche Bank to send US$223.333 million and US$457,984,607 of those borrowed funds to the UBS account of Aabar Investments PJS Limited.
(This Aabar was incorporated in Seychelles and is now known to be a fake Aabar mimicking the name of the actual Abu Dhabi-owned firm Aabar Investments PJS, and the fake Aabar’s UBS account was opened in July 2014.)
As a whole, this fake Aabar otherwise known as Aabar-Seychelles received on September 3 and September 30, 2014 a total of US$681,317,607 or over US$681 million of money that came from 1MEHL’s bank loan.
Out of the US$681 million, Aabar-Seychelles then transferred US$226 million in four transactions to yet another fake Aabar known as Aabar International Investments Ltd on four different days from October 16, 2014 to November 17, 2014.
This fake company Aabar International was incorporated in the British Virgin Islands, while its bank account at Amicorp, Barbados was opened on September 18, 2014, just about a month before money came in from Aabar-Seychelles.
Immediately after receiving the US$226 million from Aabar-Seychelles, the British Virgin Islands-incorporate Aabar International transferred an almost identical sum totalling US$225.5 million in four transactions to Vista Equity International Partners Limited on about the same days within the same period.
These four transfers from Aabar International to Vista Equity would be namely US$82 million (October 16, 2014), US$28 million (October 24, 2014), US$92 million (November 7, 2014) and US$23.5 million (November 17, 2014).
Based on an October 8, 2014 document for Vista Equity’s opening of its account at the same Amicorp bank, Adam Ariff said this company had a registered address in the Seychelles and with Tan named as its beneficiary owner. Tan was also named as Vista Equity’s authorised signatory.
Low is better known as Jho Low, and the prosecution on the first day of trial had described Tan as Low’s “shadow” and Low as Najib’s mirror image and alter ego.
At the High Court, Bank Negara Malaysia analyst Adam Ariff Mohd Roslan today gave a detailed analysis of how 1MDB subsidiary 1MDB Energy Holdings Limited’s (1MEHL) US$975 million borrowed from Deutsche Bank was passed through two fake Aabar companies and a company owned by Malaysian fugitive Low Taek Jho’s associate Eric Tan Kim Loong before a small portion totalling RM45.8 million reached Najib in a matter of four months. — Picture by Firdaus Latif
Adam Ariff testified that the Tan-controlled Vista Equity had then transferred out money equivalent to US$13,973,804.15 (US$13.97 million) in the form of £8,706,021.92 (£8.7 million) to Najib’s AmIslamic bank account which carried the codename “AmPrivate Banking-1MY” in four transactions between October 17, 2014 and December 17, 2014.
The £8.7 million was then converted into Malaysian ringgit before being credited into Najib’s “AmPrivate Banking-1MY” account in five transactions during the October 23, 2014 to December 19, 2014 period.
From Adam Ariff’s money trail based on bank documents, a total of RM45,825,918.13 or RM45.8 million reached Najib’s “AmPrivate Banking-1MY” through those five transactions.
The five transactions equivalent to £8.7 million which reached Najib are RM30,032,250 (RM30 million) on October 23, 2014; RM3,624,473.70 (RM3.6 million) on November 24, 2014; RM11,567.57 on November 26, 2014; RM5,360,065 (RM5.36 million) on December 10, 2014; and RM6,809,129.43 (RM6.8 million) on December 19, 2014.
This is the final part of the fourth phase of the 1MDB scheme which Adam Ariff has been presenting to the High Court over these four days.
With this RM45 million entering Najib’s “AmPrivate Banking-1MY”, there would have been RM2.28 billion of 1MDB-originated funds from all four phases that were shown by Adam Ariff as having entered Najib’s AmIslamic bank accounts.
Earlier this week, Adam Ariff laid out the money trail for first and second phase of the 1MDB scheme, saying that the RM60 million and RM90 million which were sent to Najib’s AmIslamic account with the codename “AmPrivate Banking-MR” in 2011 and 2012 respectively could all be traced back to funds belonging to 1MDB and 1MDB’s subsidiary 1MDB Energy (Langat) Limited’s (1MELL).
The first phase saw US$20 million or RM60 million of 1MDB funds travelling through Low’s company Good Star Limited’s RBS Coutts bank account and to a bank account belonging to a “Prince Faisal bin Turki bin Bandar Al Saud” before it reached Najib’s account which had RM484 as its balance then, while the second phase saw US$30 million or RM90 million of 1MELL’s funds flowed through accounts including Jho Low’s associate’s Tan’s Blackstone Asia Real Estate Partners’s account before reaching Najib’s account.
As for the third phase, Adam Ariff had yesterday showed how US$681 million from a US$2.72 billion debt taken on by 1MDB subsidiary 1MDB Global Investments Limited (1GIL) was funnelled out for purported investments, only to end up passing through Jho Low’s associate Tan’s two companies Granton Property Holding Limited and Tanore Finance Corp before ending up in Najib’s “AmPrivate Banking-MR” account in 2013. Najib’s account had over RM879 million before the US$681 million (RM2.081 billion) came in.
Earlier today, Adam Ariff also confirmed that RM4 million of funds originating from 1MEHL’s US$250 million bank loan had passed through two companies also owned and controlled by Jho Low’s associate Tan — Affinity Equity International Partners Limited and Blackrock Commodities (Global) Limited — before reaching Najib’s “AmPrivate Banking-1MY” account in June 2014.
In other words, in each of the four phases of the 1MDB scheme, money had flowed from 1MDB and its subsidiaries through companies owned by Low or Tan before reaching Najib’s AmIslamic bank accounts.
On the first day of trial, the prosecution had said it would show that 1MDB funds had been transferred in multiple transactions to Najib’s accounts, namely US$20 million equivalent to RM60,629,839.43 or over RM60 million from the first phase, US$30 million equivalent to RM90,899,927.28 or over RM90 million (second phase), US$681 million equivalent to RM2,081,476,926 or over RM2 billion (third phase), and transactions in British pound that were equivalent to RM4,093,500 and RM45,837,485.70 or a combined total of RM49,930,985.70 million or over RM49 million (fourth phase).
Najib’s 1MDB trial before judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah resumes on October 9, with Adam Ariff expected to continue testifying.