Najib’s ex-PR chief charged with money laundering

Paul Stadlen. (Facebook pic)

PETALING JAYA: A British citizen once hired by former prime minister Najib Razak for public relations work has been charged with money laundering in relation to state investment fund 1MDB.

Sources confirmed with FMT that former Apco Worldwide Malaysia managing director Paul Stadlen was charged in absentia over a sum of RM15 million.

FMT also understands that another senior lawyer with links to the previous administration will have action taken against him.

In November, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said it was trying to track down Stadlen, who is believed to have been part of Najib’s communications team in the Prime Minister’s Department.

Officials said Stadlen was wanted for questioning in connection with the 1MDB probe.

Whistleblower site Sarawak Report previously claimed Stadlen was offered US$420,000 for a six-month stint to advise the Najib administration.

His former company Apco came under intense scrutiny when it was revealed that the PR firm was paid a huge amount to promote campaigns by the government, including Najib’s 1Malaysia initiative.

It was eventually dismissed from its role.

MACC later confirmed that Stadlen had left the country before the May 9 polls last year.

According to The Daily Mail, he is believed to have flown to London before heading to an unknown destination.