Fugitive St Kitts-Nevis economic citizen indicted in billion-dollar money laundering conspiracy

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Low Taek Jho (“Jho Low")

NEW YORK, USA — A three-count criminal indictment was unsealed on Thursday in federal court in the Eastern District of New York charging Low Taek Jho, 36, also known as “Jho Low”, and Ng Chong Hwa, 51, also known as “Roger Ng”, with conspiring to launder billions of dollars embezzled from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), Malaysia’s investment development fund, and conspiring to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) by paying bribes to various Malaysian and Abu Dhabi officials. Low is understood to be an economic citizen of St Kitts and Nevis

As part of the three-count indictment, Ng is also charged with conspiring to violate the FCPA by circumventing the internal accounting controls of a major New York-headquartered financial institution, Goldman Sachs, which underwrote more than $6 billion in bonds issued by 1MDB in three separate bond offerings in 2012 and 2013, while Ng was employed at Goldman Sachs as a managing director.

Ng was arrested earlier on Thursday in Malaysia, pursuant to a provisional arrest warrant issued at the request of the United States. Low remains at large and is believed to be travelling on his St Kitts and Nevis passport.

In August, Malaysian police filed criminal charges against Low in absentia. He was charged with eight counts of money laundering at a court in the administrative capital Putrajaya. His father, Low Hock Peng, was also charged with one count under the same money laundering act.

The St Kitts and Nevis Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU) has a policy not to comment on whether or not specific individuals are economic citizens and the prime minister’s press secretary had previously declined to comment on the matter.

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