1MDB scandal

Ex-aide to 1MDB fugitive Jho Low dies weeks after questioning


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Ex-aide to 1MDB fugitive Jho Low dies weeks after questioning

MALAYSIAN CAPITAL. A view of Kuala Lumpur's skyline in Malaysia May 30, 2023.

Hasnoor Hussain/REUTERS

Kee Kok Thiam died in a hospital of a 'sudden massive stroke,' according to his lawyers

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – A former aide to Malaysian fugitive Jho Low – wanted for his central role in the multi-billion dollar 1MDB corruption scandal – has died weeks after being questioned by Malaysian authorities on Low’s whereabouts, his lawyers said on Wednesday, May 31.

Kee Kok Thiam, 56, died in a hospital of a “sudden massive stroke” on Monday, May 29, Valen, Oh & Partners said in a statement. They did not provide any other details.

Kee was an associate of Low, whose full name is Low Taek Jho, a Malaysian financier who is wanted in at least three countries after Malaysian and US authorities identified him as the mastermind of the looting.

Earlier in May, Kee had been repatriated to Malaysia from Macau after five years on the run. He was questioned by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) on arrival and had his house searched, media reported.

He had allegedly received funds misappropriated from 1MDB, the media reports said.

An Al Jazeera report on Tuesday said Kee had confirmed to the MACC that he had met Low and other 1MDB fugitives and suspects in Macau, a special administrative region of China.

The MACC confirmed it had made the comments to Al Jazeera, but did not disclose details.

The anti-graft agency did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Kee’s death.

Malaysian authorities have previously said Low was believed to be in China, though Beijing has denied that.

Low has been charged in Malaysia and the United States for allegedly masterminding the theft of $4.5 billion from now-defunct fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). He has consistently denied wrongdoing.

At least six countries have opened probes into 1MDB, in a wide-ranging scandal that has ensnared financial institutions, Hollywood stars and high-ranking officials across the globe.

Former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak, who co-founded 1MDB, was sentenced to 12 years in prison last year for graft linked to the scandal. – Rappler.com

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