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Malaysian anti-graft agency seeks review of decision to clear Najib in corruption probe

Reuters

Malaysia’s anti-graft agency said Wednesday it will seek a review of a decision by the attorney general to clear Prime Minister Najib Razak in a graft investigation.

Attorney General Mohamed Apandi Ali cleared Najib of any criminal offenses or corruption Tuesday, and said he was closing investigations into a murky multimillion-dollar funding scandal that his opponents had hoped would bring him down.

Najib was buffeted last year by allegations of graft and mismanagement at the debt-laden state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and by a revelation that about $681 million was deposited into his personal bank account.

Apandi said the $681 million transfer to Najib’s account was a gift from Saudi Arabia’s royal family, and added that no further action needed to be taken on the matter.

The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said it would submit Apandi’s decision to an Operations Review Panel, which reviews cases where the public prosecutor has not pursued charges, and another special panel to be appointed.

It said in a statement it would also seek a review of another decision by Apandi, to close a case against SRC International, a former 1MDB subsidiary that was investigated for alleged misappropriation of funds.

Apandi was not immediately available for comment.

Last month, the MACC said it had sent two reports to the attorney general’s office about its investigations into the transfer of money into Najib’s bank accounts and the affairs of state fund 1MDB.

The anti-corruption agency did not reveal its findings or say whether any wrongdoing was involved, saying any decision to take further action would be up to the attorney-general.