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August 31, 2012

Swiss Attorney General opens criminal case against UBS over Malaysian money-laundering scandal

Filed under: Corruptions — Pengayau @ 11:25 am
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(BERN, SWITZERLAND). Switzerland’s Attorney General has opened a criminal case against UBS, the Swiss banking group, over suspected money-laundering of timber corruption proceeds from the Malaysian state of Sabah in Borneo. This has been confirmed today by the Office of the Attorney General in the Swiss capital, Bern.

The case against UBS was opened on 29th August 2012, following a criminal complaint by the Bruno Manser Fund over the bank’s close ties with Musa Aman, Chief Minister of the Malaysian state of Sabah. Musa Aman and his nominees have been accused of laundering over 90 million US dollars of corruption proceeds from the tropical timber business in Sabah, Borneo, through a number of UBS bank accounts in Hong Kong. Musa Aman also has a personal bank account with UBS in Zurich. According to the Bruno Manser Fund, UBS has failed to properly app

ly due diligence, as is required by law when dealing with Politically Exposed Persons (PEP). Musa Aman is not only head of the Sabah state government but also the brother of the Malaysian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Anifah Aman.The case is based on Switzerland’s tough anti-money-laundering legislation, which makes it a criminal offence for Swiss companies to be involved in laundering the proceeds of corruption and other crime in their worldwide activities.The Swiss case is hitting the Malaysian government at a critical moment, just two weeks before the announced visit of the British royal couple, Prince William and Kate Middleton. The Duke and Duchess are planning to visit Sabah on 15th September 2012 in order to see the “largest remaining rainforest” at Danum Valley. Sabah’s head of government, Musa Aman, has personally benefited from the large-scale logging of the nearby tropical rainforests, one of the world’s most biodiverse habitats.

(31 August 2012)

Via Stop Timber Corruption

November 8, 2011

BREAKING NEWS! Taib under investigation in the UK! – British government to monitor MACC


“We will monitor the MACC investigation”: British Minister of State, Jeremy Browne

(LONDON, UK). The British government will be monitoring the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission’s (MACC) investigation into Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud (“Taib”) and will use its findings “to support a UK investigation”. This has been confirmed in a letter to the Bruno Manser Fund from British Minister of State, Jeremy Browne, the Minister who holds responsibility for Britain’s relations with Malaysia.

Browne confirms that the UK government has started looking into alleged Taib family money-laundering in the UK and British offshore financial centres. According to the Minister, a complaint by the Bruno Manser Fund has been “forwarded to the relevant UK authorities”. “We are also aware, as your letter states, that the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission (MACC) has announced the opening of its own investigation into Taib earlier this year.”

“The UK attaches considerable importance to the integrity and supervision of its financial services industry and property sector, so concrete allegations of money laundering are taken very seriously.” The Minister also stated that the British and Malaysian Governments had signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Transnational Crime, “which foresees close cooperation on money laundering and other illegal activities.”

The Bruno Manser Fund had alerted British Prime Minister David Cameron about suspected money-laundering by the Taib family and called on the British government to freeze illicit Taib assets in the UK. The Taibs’ business flagship in the UK is Ridgeford Properties, a property company controlled by Taib’s daughter Jamilah Taib Murray and his Canadian son-in-law, Sean Murray. Ridgeford Properties holds luxury properties in Central London estimated to be worth several hundred million pounds.

Prior to the British government, the Swiss and German bank regulators had announced that they would look into potential Taib-related dealings in their countries. Australia’s Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd and Canada’s Finance Minister James Flaherty had also assured the Bruno Manser Fund that their governments were taking money-laundering allegations against the Taib family very seriously and would look into the matter. http://www.stop-timber-corruption.org/campaign_update?show=34

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