Najib arrested for corruption


Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has been arrested in Kuala Lumpur, state media reported, as part of a probe into alleged theft and money laundering at the 1MDB state investment fund.

Authorities picked up Najib from his home after serving him a remand order, two sources close to the family said.

Former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak has been arrested by anti-corruption authorities and is due to be charged on Wednesday.

A spokesman for Najib said the SRC charges and the 1MDB investigations against the former leader were "politically motivated", and that Najib will contest these charges and clear his name in court.

Mahathir Mohamad, Najib's 92-year-old successor who came out of retirement to run for election, told Reuters last month that there was "an nearly ideal case" against the former prime minister.

The U.S. Justice Department has also been investigating 1MDB, the Journal states, and "alleges in civil lawsuits that $4.5 billion was taken from the fund and used to buy mansions, a yacht and to fund a Hollywood production company, among other uses".

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USA investigators said Najib's associates looted $US4.5 billion from the fund, of which $US681 million landed in Najib's bank account and some $US30 million used to buy jewellery for his wife.

Malaysian investigators are set to question the producer of "The Wolf of Wall Street" as they step up efforts to recoup funds potentially lost through 1MDB.

Najib and 1MDB have denied any wrongdoing.

Last week, Malaysian police announced they had seized almost $275 million in cash, jewelry and luxury handbags in raids on properties linked to Najib. Red Granite in March agreed to pay the United States government $60 million to settle claims that it benefited from the 1MDB scandal. USA investigators say $4.5 billion is suspected to have been looted and laundered from the fund, some of which landed in Najib's bank accounts.

The company was created in 2011 to pursue overseas investments in energy resources, and was a subsidiary of 1MDB until 2012 when it was put under the jurisdiction of the Finance Ministry, of which Najib was the minister.