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The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Malaysia in $3.9 bn settlement with Goldman over 1MDB

Former PM Najib Razak is accused of siphoning money from a state wealth fund [Anadolu]

Date of publication: 24 July, 2020

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Goldman's role came under scrutiny over bond issues totalling $6.5 billion it helped arranged for the fund.

Malaysia announced Friday that it had reached a settlement with Wall Street titan Goldman Sachs for $3.9 billion over the bank's role in the 1MDB corruption scandal.

Billions of dollars were looted from sovereign wealth 1Malaysia Development Berhad in a fraud that allegedly involved former leader Najib Razak and his cronies. 

Goldman's role came under scrutiny over bond issues totalling $6.5 billion it helped arranged for the fund, with Malaysia claiming large amounts were misappropriated during the process.

But in a statement, Malaysia's finance ministry said that a settlement had been reached with Goldman after long-running talks. 

It included a cash payment of $2.5 billion and a guarantee that at least $1.4 billion in assets acquired with misappropriated funds would be recovered, it said. 

Read more: Malaysian court grants temporary freeze on $340 million PetroSaudi International money in UK

"This settlement represents assets that rightfully belong to the Malaysian people," Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz said. 

"We are confident that we are securing more money from Goldman Sachs compared to previous attempts, which were far below expectations."

The settlement comes just days before the verdict in Najib's first trial linked to the scandal.

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