Malaysian police seize haul of cash, luxury items from former PM Najib's premises
Malaysian police said on Wednesday they have seized the total value of cash and luxury items from premises related to former Prime Minister Najib Razak between 910 million ringgit (226 million U.S. dollars) and 1.1 billion ringgit (273 million U.S. dollars).
The counted items include cash in 26 currencies, 25 bags of gold, 12,000 items of jewelry, 567 luxury handbags, 423 watches and 234 sunglasses, Amar Singh, director of the police Commercial Crime Investigation Department, told a press conference.
Malaysian Police's Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) Director, Amar Singh shows a graph of seized items from a raid at the residence of former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak during a press conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 27 June 2018.[Photo: IC]
He said all the items were seized from six premises related to Najib, namely the Prime Minister's official residence and the Prime Minister's office in Putrajaya, three luxury condominiums in downtown Kuala Lumpur and Najib's private house.
Amar Singh said normally the counting should be done at the premises of the raid operation, but as the number is too large and the premises are not suitable for the counting, they had to invite experts to help do the counting and verification in the police station.
It took the police and the experts more than a month to do the counting, from May 21 to June 25, he said.
Among the items, gold and diamond items took the lion's share, with the mere cost of the gold and gem materials reaching 442 million ringgit. Amar Singh said the retail price could rise to 660 million ringgit to 880 million ringgit.
As for the more than 12,000 items of jewelry, he said they include 1,400 necklaces, 2,200 rings, 2,100 bracelets, 2,800 pairs of earrings, 1,600 brooches and 14 tiaras.
Najib, who lost power in an election on May 9, is being probed for his role in 1MDB, which he chaired the advisory board.
The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission has questioned Najib twice for a 42 million ringgit transfer to his personal account. Najib has denied any wrongdoing and also accused the police of carrying out the search in an indiscriminate manner.
Amar Singh did not reveal whether arrests will be made following the seizure but said the police will record his statement soon.
Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has said that Najib is expected to be charged with embezzlement, corruption and a "lot of other things."