While Penang’s squash queen Nicol David has put Malaysia on the map in sports, another Penangite is carving a name for himself in real estate deals in New York. Only problem is the media coverage has not drenched his exploits with much glory.  Oh, what a tangled business and real estate web he has spun … Check out this New York Times expose and note Jho Low’s reported brief meeting with Najib.

 

 

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6 COMMENTS

  1. Latest on Jho Low by Daily Mail:

    Popping champagne with Paris Hilton, walking the red carpet with Leonardo DiCaprio, and cycling Busta Rhymes around town on a tuk-tuk.

    This is Low Taek Jho, known popularly as Jho Low, the 34-year-old Malaysian businessman who has long been a staple of the celebrity party scene in New York and LA.

    But he is now in the limelight for different reasons – at the center of a federal probe into an alleged multi-million dollar money laundering scandal involving Goldman Sachs and the prime minister of Malaysia Najib Razak.

    The scandal erupted last year when it was claimed $681 million of the Malaysian government’s public investment firm, run by Goldman Sachs, made its way into Razak’s personal account.

    Now, as five countries including the UK and France scrutinize records for evidence of money-laundering, and Goldman Sachs risks facing a congressional hearing, the mysterious and elusive party boy Mr Low has become a key player in the American branch of the investigation.

    Low is accused of using 1MDB to fund his lavish lifestyle in the States.

    He is also accused of snapping up properties, world-class art, and a film company in the United States on behalf of Razak’s stepson Riza Aziz – a friend of Low’s from London’s exclusive boarding school, Harrow.

    Low is now in the limelight for different reasons – at the center of a probe into an alleged money-laundering scandal involving Goldman Sachs and the prime minister of Malaysia. Pictured with Alicia Keys in 2014

    The US Justice Department is racing to scrutinize Low’s real estate deals for evidence linking them to the Malaysian government, the New York Post reports.

    The film production company he co-founded with Aziz, Red Granite Pictures – which made Wolf Of Wall Street – is also under scrutiny.

    A source connected to the federal probe told the Post this weekend it could be ‘one of the largest money-laundering frauds in the world’.

    The alleged scandal first came to a head last year, when the Sarawak Report, a UK-based site run by a former BBC journalist, published a series of alleged internal emails between 1MDB and Saudi energy company PetroSaudi.

    The emails, the report said, showed $700 million involved in the deal between 1MDB and PetroSaudi was sent to a bank account belonging to a company controlled by Low.

    Low last year strongly denied the report’s claims that he benefited from alleged improprieties in the complex 2009 financial deal.

    Lawyers for Low said the allegation was ‘false, materially misleading and is categorically denied by our client’.

    The Sarawak Report is a UK-based site run by a former BBC journalist that focuses on Malaysian corruption allegations.

    In particular, federal investigators are looking at two properties traced back to Low. One is a $24 million apartment in New York’s exclusive Time Warner Center, the other a mansion in Beverly Hills.

    Both been quietly sold both to a shell company controlled by the Malaysian prime minister’s stepson Riza Aziz, according to the New York Times.

    Aziz and Low met at London’s exclusive boarding school Harrow School, which counts among its alumni Lord Byron, King Hussein of Jordan, King Faisal II of Iraq, writer-director Richard Curtis, and Benedict Cumberbatch.

    Low went on to study at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Business School, where he made connections with even more royals and politicos from Jordan and Kuwait, according to a Times profile on Low last year.

    He was first spotted on the New York party scene as a fresh-faced 28-year-old in 2008, the Post reports.

    It was not long before he became a permanent fixture in club photos alongside Lindsay Lohan, Alicia Keys and other celebrities.

    In 2009, Aziz’s stepfather Najib Razak became Malaysia’s prime minister. It is that year that Low is alleged to have conducted a financial deal on behalf of the politician.

    Last week, the chairman for Goldman Sachs’ Southeast Asia operations, Tim Leissner – husband of fashion designer Kimora Lee – abruptly quit his job and returned to Los Angeles as the scandal balloons in Kuala Lumpur.

    Leissner, 45, reportedly helped set up 1MDB, for which Goldman Sachs received a staggering nine per cent in commissions for bond sales – significantly more than the usual four or five per cent for banks.

    One claim was that the money was transferred from Saudi Arabia for financing the fight against ISIS terrorism.

    The Prime Minister said it was a donation from the country.

    Leissner, who lives in Singapore with his wife and the couple’s eight-month-old son, Wolfe, left the country for LA as the investigation began.

    The Post reported that the FBI were investigating all the fund’s transactions due to money-laundering allegations in five countries.

    The investigation could lead Goldman to face a congressional inquiry.

    The bank has not commented on the situation.

  2. 1MDB non-executive director Tan Sri Ong Gim Huat is not just a friend, but also a business partner of 30 years of Tan Sri Larry Low Hock Peng. L‎ow is the father of Jho Low or Low Taek Jho, who is said to have influence over the operations of debt-laden 1MDB, the controversial sovereign wealth fund owned by the Ministry of Finance. Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) documents show that Ong and Low are directors and shareholders of Wonder Bay Sdn Bhd, a Penang based property development company.

    http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/1mdb-director-ong-is-business-partner-of-jho-lows-father

  3. Jho Low, one of the art collectors who own property in the Time Warner Center (he owns a penthouse on the 76th floor, once owned by Jay Z and Beyonce, that he bought for $30.55 million) has been identified in an article in the New York Times as the buyer of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s 1982 painting Dustheads. The painting fetched $48.8 million in May 2013 at Christie’s New York.

    http://news.artnet.com/in-brief/malaysian-financier-jho-low-revealed-as-purchaser-of-jean-michel-basquiats-49-million-dustheads-248008

  4. Jho Low was once an intern in Koh Tsu Koon’s office. He must have seen and realized it is stupid to be a coward in whatever field.

  5. If any US laws have been broken, an investigation in Congress by a
    US Senator or US Congressperson will reveal more dirt.

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