Seventeen current and former directors at subsidiaries of Goldman Sachs Group Inc are facing criminal charges in Malaysia. It was established by Najib when he took power in 2009 to source funding for Malaysia's long-term economic development and promote foreign direct investments.
An estimated $4.5 billion was embezzled from 1MDB by Najib and fund officials and their associates between 2009 and 2014. The credit cards were rolled out this week to select Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) customers before a bigger launch later in the month.
Goldman Sachs said the charges were misdirected.
Meanwhile, from Goldman Sachs (Asia) LLC, Oliver Robert Morgan Bolitho; Matthew Thayer Freemont-Smith; Frederick Towfigh; Archie William Parnell; Ronald Suk Bae Lee; Richard Mark Campbell-Breeden; Keith Leslie Hayes; Amol Sagun Naik; John Michael Evans and Dimitrios Kavvathas have been charged. His wife and stepson also have charged in the case.
Announcing the latest charges, Attorney General Tommy Thomas said: 'Custodial sentences and criminal fines will be sought against the accused. given the severity of the scheme to defraud and fraudulent misappropriation of billions in bond proceeds'.
Malaysia is suing Goldman Sachs for its role in helping to raise $6.5 billion through bond offerings for scandal-wracked 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) turned into a cash cow by former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak.
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"We believe the charges announced today, along with those against three Goldman Sachs entities announced in December a year ago, are misdirected and will be vigorously defended", a Goldman Sachs spokesman said by email to Bloomberg, while Alibaba did not comment.
In December, Malaysia filed charges against the units - Goldman Sachs International, Goldman Sachs (Asia), and Goldman Sachs (Singapore) - and two ex-employees.
Friday's charges were brought under laws that mandate that directors, chief executives and other corporate representatives in position at the time of an offense are also deemed to have committed that crime, the statement said.
Both Roger Ng and Leissner were charged in the US.
Leissner has pleaded guilty in America, while Ng was extradited to the US from Malaysia in May and pleaded not guilty.
The 1MDB corruption scandal came to light in 2015, when a media investigation uncovered the diversion of funds worth almost $681 million from the investment fund to the private accounts of then-Prime Minister Najib Razak.