Jho Low is a fugitive who is being identified as one of the masterminds behind the state-owned Malaysian investment fund, infamously known as the 1MDB financial corruption scandal.
From money laundering, hosting extravagant parties for celebrities, to doing absolutely anything to escape prison, this fake Malaysian billionaire seems to have seen it all and done the worst.
While former Prime Minister, Najib Razak, and International investment bank, Goldman Sachs, were previously convicted for their shady deals and siphoning off billions, Al Jazeera reveals that Low is indeed “the man who potentially holds all the secrets to exactly how much money was stolen, who took it and who called the shots.”
The 39-year-old is currently wanted in Malaysia, Singapore and the United States, but has vanished and been on the run for almost 5 years. The alleged billion dollar scammer has denied all wrongdoings and even created an official website, jho-low.com, to campaign for his innocence. This website, where written statements protesting his innocence are posted by his lawyers, has been the only public presence of Low thus far.
However, following an earth-shattering revelation in Al Jazeera’s special investigation, “Jho Low: Hunt For A Fugitive”, recordings of Low’s phone conversations are said to have surfaced. In these controversial recordings, Low is apparently heard trying to strike a deal for a “get out of jail free” card with the former Malaysian government led by Mahathir Mohamad.
These recordings, which took place soon after Mahathir Mohamad won against Najib Razak, show Low begging for his freedom by betraying his former allies and offering to exchange information on fellow 1MDB conspirators, including Razak himself.
Low reportedly puts the blame for the 1MDB heist firmly on Razak, who was the finance minister at the time billions were stolen from the fund. “I have no authority to make any decision,” explains Low. “It’s a pretty known fact that … all the approvals have to be approved by the minister of finance.”
The US Department of Justice documented Low’s purchase of a US$27m pink diamond for the former prime minister’s wife, Rosmah Mansor. However, the fugitive claims that this was not all; Low stated that Razak spent “north of half a billion dollars” on jewellery for Mansor, and goes on to add, “That was a huge amount.”
It is reported that the fugitive also offers others who are on the run as potential witnesses in 1MDB-related cases. Low is said to complain about the mounting costs of legal representation, showing no remorse or guilt for stealing money from the Malaysian people.
“I don’t believe there’s any wrongdoing,” says Low.
According to Al Jazeera, he also goes on to suggest that he merely borrowed billions from the 1MDB sovereign state fund to buy himself luxury assets, such as real estate around the world, art masterpieces, a private jet and a US$250 million luxury super yacht, millions of dollars worth of Christal champagne, and much much more.
Low sure seems to have no problem having such a freehand with money – especially when it’s someone else’s.
“All these ultimately were loans, directly or indirectly, but, ultimately, I think the time has come, we want to assist in repatriating these assets back in return for cooperating and moving on with life without, you know, being prosecuted,” asserts the fraudster.
In response to this, the Former FBI special agent Debra LaPrevotte stated, “If there were no wrongdoings, people wouldn’t be giving back the assets, right? There would be no assets to be seized. It’s comical. It’s like, if I keep saying the lie, maybe somebody will believe me.”