1MDB-linked RM2 mil in Tun Hussein Onn Foundation to be forfeited

KUALA LUMPUR: The Tun Hussein Onn Foundation has agreed to forfeit to the government funds of RM1,980,328.37, which were frozen in its account for being allegedly linked to the 1MDB scandal.

Its lawyer, Hariharan Tara Singh, informed High Court judicial commissioner Ahmad Shahrir Mohd Salleh about this when the matter came up for mention today.

Following that, deputy public prosecutor Allan Suman Pillai, from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), told the court that the prosecution would withdraw its forfeiture application against the foundation.

Shahrir then allowed the forfeiture of the money in the foundation’s account to the government.

He also allowed the forfeiture of RM121,205 that was frozen in an account belonging to Rayhar Travels Sdn Bhd, also for being allegedly linked to the 1MDB scandal, after the prosecution withdrew its forfeiture application against the company.

In another High Court, judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah fixed Dec 26 to hear the government’s application to forfeit money totalling RM11.9 million, allegedly linked to the 1MDB scandal, seized from businessman Bustari Yusuf.

Sequerah set the date after the matter came up for mention in his chambers today.

Besides Pillai, also present during the proceeding was Bustari’s lawyer Kamarul Hisham Kamaruddin.

Anther High Court today set Feb 28 next year to hear an application by the MACC to forfeit RM700,000 in a bank account under the name of the Pekan Umno division for allegedly being linked to the 1MDB scandal.

Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali fixed the date following an application by deputy public prosecutor Abdul Rashid Sulaiman after no third party appeared in the court today to stake a claim to the money. The MACC had gazetted the notice for the forfeiture on Oct 31 this year.

Nazlan also ordered both parties to file their written submissions before Feb 17.

Lawyer Amalin Mohd Zahid represented Pekan Umno.

The forfeiture application was made under the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001.

In June this year, MACC chief commissioner Latheefa Koya announced that the commission had filed forfeiture suits against 41 organisations and individuals, seeking to recoup RM270 million, allegedly siphoned from 1MDB funds.

The MACC believed that the money was transferred to the 41 respondents from former prime minister Najib Razak’s bank account.