Former Malaysian PM Najib slapped with money-laundering charges

Today's charges are based on Section 4 (1) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001.

The charges brought by Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) are in addition to four graft and abuse of power charges by the authority relating to SRC International, on July 4.

Razak has already refuted three counts of money laundering for allegedly collecting $10.3 million (Rs 71 crore) as part of a multi-billion-dollar financial scandal, The Telegraph reported.

Najib, 65, who looked calm, only said, "understood" after the three charges were read out to him one by one by a court interpreter before Judge Azura Alwi.

The indictments carry a maximum penalty of 15 years in jail per charge and a possible fine of five times the amount of money allegedly received illegally.

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The new charges allege 42 million ringgit stemming from illegal activities was transferred to a bank account between December 2014 and February 2015.

He claimed trial to three counts of money laundering at the High Court in Putrajaya, in fresh charges of receiving RM27 million and RM10 million which were wired to his bank accounts on three separate transactions.

His case was transferred to another court, where he entered not guilty pleas, meaning he will stand trial.

The prosecution team, led by Datuk Mohamad Hanafiah Zakaria, applied to have it heard together with the previous charges before another High Court.

Najib Razak pleaded not guilty at Malaysia's high court on Tuesday.

Najib is at the centre of a probe into billions of dollars missing from a state investment fund called 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), which was set up in 2009 after he became head of his country's government.

The new government reopened investigations into 1MDB that were stifled under Najib and barred him and his wife from leaving the country.

Najib, who has consistently denied any wrongdoing, and his allies are accused of plundering billions of dollars from 1MDB to buy everything from U.S. real estate to artworks.

Vanessa Coleman