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Malaysia appoints Singapore law firm to start 1MDB legal action against 53 individuals and companies
[PUTRAJAYA] The Malaysian Government has appointed Singapore law firm Tan Rajah & Cheah as its solicitors to institute legal action against 53 individuals and companies to claim monies belonging to 1Malaysia Development Berhad ( 1MDB).
According to a source, Attorney-General Tommy Thomas approved the appointment of the firm early this week.
The source said the Malaysian government would file an application at the High Court in Singapore against the 53 defendants for orders to recover the monies belonging to 1MDB.
The source said Mr Thomas met Singapore Attorney-General Lucien Wong recently to facilitate the return of the 1MDB monies which had been frozen by the Singapore authorities. Among the 53 defendants is Malaysian businessman Low Taek Jho or Jho Low.
Court orders are necessary to release the monies to 1MDB or the Government of Malaysia, the source said.
Malaysia has to appoint solicitors from Singapore to file the action because Malaysian lawyers cannot appear in Singapore courts.
On May 31, the 1MDB Special Task Force, in a statement, said Singapore and Malaysia had agreed to collaborate to bring back the monies believed to have been embezzled from 1MDB.
Several high-ranking officials from the Singapore and Malaysia taskforces looking into the 1MDB scandal met in Putrajaya in late May. Both teams have agreed to work together to recover money believed to have been misappropriated from the state investment firm.
Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad reopened 1MDB investigations after defeating Najib Razak in the historic May 9 elections.