Illustrative image (Source: thestar.com.my)
 
Kuala Lumpur (VNA) - Malaysian police raided the Kuala Lumpur office of audit firm Deloitte on May 23 as part of a widening probe into a multibillion-dollar scandal at state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad  (1MDB).

Police seized documents and files during the operation.

In January, Malaysia’s securities regulator fined Deloitte 2.2 million ringgits (about 525,000 USD) for failing to report irregularities in relation to an Islamic bond issued by a 1MDB-linked company.

Deloitte was 1MDB’s third auditor after the fund fired its earlier auditors, KPMG and Ernst & Young.

It drew the police’s attention while auditing financial documents of 1MDB in 2013 and 2014. The firm no longer covered the fund in 2016.

Najib Razak, the fund’s founder faces seven charges, including corruption, criminal breach of trust, and money laundering, which were said to have helped him pocket 42 million MYR (10.3 million USD).

The 1MDB scandal was one of the reasons why Malaysian voters turned their backs on Razak’s coalition in the election in May 2018, ending the six-decade rule of this coalition, and raised support for Mohamad’s alliance.

Since this election, Najib Razak has faced 48 charges, mostly related to the 1MDB fund and other state institutions. However, he denied any wrongdoings.

Najib founded the 1MDB investment fund in 2009, supposedly to serve Malaysia’s development through global partnerships and foreign direct investment.

However, it became the centre of a money laundering scandal, allegedly causing losses of up to 3.7 billion USD and leading to probes in Malaysia and several other countries such as the US, Switzerland, Singapore and China.–VNA