1MDB sues Deutsche Bank, JPMorgan and Coutts to recoup $23bn

Malaysian sovereign wealth fund 1MDB continues pursuit of compensation following scandal

Malaysia’s Ministry of Finance announced on Monday that 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), the nation’s sovereign wealth fund, has, in conjunction with a former subsidiary, filed 22 civil suits in the hope to recover more than $23bn.

According to documents filed at a Kuala Lumpur court, 1MDB is seeking $1bn from Coutts, $800m from JPMorgan and $1.1bn from Deutsche Bank.

Multi-billion-dollar scandal

Established 12 years ago, 1MDB has been the subject of significant scandal, with US investigators alleging that more than $4.5bn was stolen from the fund and laundered by associates of Najib Razak, Malaysia’s former prime minister.

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Malaysian authorities found Razak guilty of corruption last year, sentencing him to more than a decade in prison and forcing him to pay a $49m fine. Although substantial for an individual, the fine paled in significance to the $2.5bn and $3bn settlements that Goldman Sachs reached with Malaysian and US authorities, respectively, for its role in the scandal.

Having already secured compensation from the likes of Goldman, Deloitte and AmBank, Malaysia’s Finance Minister Zafrul Abdul Aziz recently announced that the government is still intent on “pursuing other wrongdoers”.

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