Hornbill Unleashed

June 18, 2017

Jasa: DOJ’s 1MDB filings can’t prove criminality

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:01 AM

The US Department of Justice may have made many damaging claims in its civil forfeiture suit in the 1MDB scandal but the special affairs department (Jasa) does not believe it to be significant.

The propaganda arm of the government, in an information blast on Whatsapp, said this was because it was a civil case which cannot prove any criminal wrongdoing.

“Can the DOJ prove a crime had been committed through a civil suit? No.

“The civil suit is only to take over assets suspected to have been acquired illegally,” it said.

Jasa gave the example of the DOJ’s Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative seizure of former Taiwan President Chen Shui Bian properties in the US, allegedly acquired using proceeds from bribes.

“In the case of the (former) Taiwanese president, even though his assets were seized and auctioned by the DOJ, the DOJ had no evidence and could not bring any action against him,” it said.

Jasa reiterated that the DOJ’s action was a “civil complaint” and does not contain prima facie evidence.

“If the DOJ had solid proof about money laundering, surely the DOJ would have charged the wrongdoers in the US courts and the assets can be directly seized under the US’ Money Laundering Control Act.

“But because the DOJ lacked prima facie evidence, the DOJ had no choice but to go through a civil suit to take over the assets suspected of being acquired through criminal activities,” said the department.

Jasa also quoted the DOJ’s press release to drive its point, stating: “A civil forfeiture complaint is merely an allegation that money or property was involved in or represents the proceeds of a crime. These allegations are not proven until a court awards judgment in favour of the US”.

The DOJ on late Thursday announced planned seizure of an additional US$540 million in assets, allegedly acquired using funds stolen from 1MDB, bringing the total sum to US$1.7 billion.

US investigators believe at least US$4.5 billion of 1MDB funds were misappropriated.

Source : Malaysiakini


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