The US Justice Department has said it wants to seize more than $1bn in assets linked to Malaysia's 1MDB state investment fund.
The department said on Wednesday the assets were "associated with an international conspiracy to launder funds misappropriated" from 1MDB.
In court papers filed in California, federal prosecutors listed some 20 assets, including lavish real estate from Beverly Hills to a penthouse in New York's Time Warner Center.

Also included were artworks by the painters Monet and Van Gogh, as well as a Bombardier Global 5000 business jet.
In a press conference in Washington DC, US Attorney General Loretta Lynch said officials used the sovereign fund as a "personal bank account".
Lynch said the move was part of an efffort "to combat global corruption" and ensure that the US would not serve as a "safe haven to those who illegally use public funds for private gain".
The fund is owned by the Malaysian government, but none of the lawsuits named Prime Minister Najib Razak, who has consistently denied any wrongdoing.
However, the case named Riza Aziz, his stepson, as a "relevant individual" in the case.
The lawsuits also named Najib's friend, Malaysian financier Low Taek Jho, or Jho Low, and Abu Dhabi government officials Khadem al-Qubaisi and Mohamed Ahmed Badawy Al-Husseiny.

'Money-laundering scheme'

The complaint, filed in Los Angeles, alleges a complex money-laundering scheme that the Justice Department said was intended to enrich top-level officials of 1MDB.
The fund was created in 2009 by the Malaysian government with the goal of promoting economic development projects in the Asian nation.
Mahathir Mohamad on corruption and 'saving Malaysia' - UpFront
Instead, officials at the fund diverted more than $3.5bn over the next four years through a web of shell companies and bank accounts in Singapore, Switzerland, Luxembourg and the US, according to the complaint.
Federal officials said more than $1bn was laundered into the US for the personal benefit of 1MDB officials and their associates.
The funds were used to pay for luxury real estate in the US and Europe; gambling expenses in Las Vegas casinos; a London interior designer; more than $200m of artwork by artists including Van Gogh and Monet; and for the production of films, including the 2013 Oscar-nominated movie The Wolf of Wall Street.
The complaint said that among those who profited from the scheme was the prime minister's stepson Aziz, who co-founded Red Granite Pictures, a movie production studio whose films include The Wolf of Wall Street.
According to the complaint, 11 wire transfers totaling $64m were used to fund the studio's operations, including the production of the movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio.
A phone message at the movie studio on Wednesday morning was not immediately returned.
Malaysian government officials had no comment on Wednesday in response to queries about reports of the US justice department's action.
Source: Al Jazeera and agencies


Okay, some mitigating factors in The Star's this morning, as its Page 4 runs a story headed (headline for now read from Print copy, will try to C&P from its Online edition later, OK:):

Singapore seizes assets
worth RM249mil in probe



Thursday, 21 July 2016 | MYT 1:20 PM

Singapore seizes assets worth RM717mil in 1MDB-related probe

- Reuters
- Reuters
SINGAPORE: Authorities have seized assets worth S$240mil (RM717.45mil) in an investigation of 1MDB-related fund flows for possible money laundering, in a probe which has found "deficiencies" at several major banks here.
"The fund flows being investigated include those connected with Good Star Limited (Seychelles), Aabar Investments PJS Limited (BVI), Aabar Investments PJS Limited (Seychelles), and Tanore Finance Corp. (BVI)," said a joint statement by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the Attorney-General's Chambers and the Commercial Affairs Department.
The statement follows a lawsuit filed by U.S. prosecutors to seize more than US$1bil (RM4.05bil) in assets they said were tied to money stolen from the Malaysian state development fund.
The Monetary Authority of Singapore said it has completed its inspections of DBS, Standard Chartered and UBS, with preliminary findings showing instances of "control failings" in all three banks and "weaknesses in the processes for accepting clients and monitoring transactions.
"However, the MAS' inspections did not reveal pervasive control weaknesses or staff misconduct within these banks, unlike in the case of BSI Bank," the statement said.
In May, the MAS withdrew the status of Swiss BSI Bank as a merchant bank for serious breaches of anti money laundering requirements.
An onsite inspection of another Swiss bank Falcon PBS in April 2016 found substantial breaches of anti-money laundering regulations. Management oversight and inadequate risk management were found at Raffles Money Change, a moneychanger and remittance agent.
Of the assets seized, about half belonged to Malaysian financier Low Taek Jho, known as Jho Low, and his immediate family, the joint statement said.
The investigations are ongoing and Singapore has requested information from other countries as part of its probe.
"Appropriate actions will be brought against those who have broken Singapore's laws," the statement said. – Reuters
Tags / Keywords: 1MDB , Singapore , DBS , UBS , Standard Charted , MAS

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Meanwhile, go and read your PM's consistent pronouncement that EVERYTHING is OK pages 2 and 4...), going by The Star's print copy -- hey I paid RM1.20 for it OK! need to MONITOR as Desi is by nature a newsman at HEart!--, and Biz Page 3. I won' dignity my blogspace with their "disindormation or misinformation".