KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court here today allowed the government to confiscate about RM48 million deposited in bank accounts belonging to Larry Low Hock Peng, the father of fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho.
Judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan made the order after deputy public prosecutor Aaron Chelliah informed the court that no third party had appeared to make a claim on the money.
Hock Peng’s lawyers were not seen in court.
The public prosecutor earlier issued a warrant of arrest against Hock Peng and Taek Jho, better known as Jho Low.
Chelliah said Hock Peng’s lawyers could apply to set aside the order to forfeit the money.
“But they have to give valid grounds for why the government should not seize the money, or else the order of the court remains,” he told FMT.
On April 19, the High Court agreed to give a three-month notice for third parties who wish to contest the government’s forfeiture action on the RM48 million.
The government had frozen Hock Peng’s accounts, claiming the amount gained was a result of money laundering activities from 1MDB.
Chelliah told Zaini then that the prosecution had attempted to serve the cause papers on Hock Peng since the application to forfeit the money in March.
He said the authorities were unaware of Hock Peng’s whereabouts, as affirmed in an affidavit by investigating officer Foo Wei Min.
Malaysian police had sought assistance from Interpol to locate Hock Peng but were unsuccessful.
In August last year, Jho Low and Hock Peng were charged with offences under the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001 over money allegedly stolen from 1MDB.
Hock Peng was slapped with one charge while Jho Low was slapped with eight counts of money laundering.