Malaysian Attorney General rejects misappropriation charges against PM

Malaysia's top lawyer cleared Prime Minister Najib Razak of wrongdoing on Tuesday, despite a reported recommendation from the country's anti-graft authority that he be charged with criminal misappropriation.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has been accused of corruption over a $681 million donation. shahreen

The investigation into Prime Minister Razak has centered on a $681m transfer into his personal bank account, which Razak maintains was a political donation and not taken for personal gain. It was been widely speculated, however, that the funds may have been siphoned off from strategic state investment fund 1MDB. On Tuesday, Malaysian Attorney General Mohamed Apendi Ali cleared the Prime Minister of any wrongdoing, concluding that the money was indeed a donation from the royal family of Saudi Arabia and that no further legal action was required. However, it now appears that Mr Ali's decision may have run counter to the advice submitted to the Attorney General's office by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Authority following their investigation into the matter, which reportedly recommended that Prime Minister Razak be charged with criminal misappropriation.

Investigation findings rejected

The MACC has not as yet publicly confirmed what its recommendations to the Attorney General were, as news of the charge recommendation comes via an anonymous MACC source. As such, it's unclear what the legal underpinnings of such a recommendation may have been. However, the MACC announced on Wednesday that it would seek a review of Mr Ali's decision to close investigations into Prime Minister Razak. 'It's a pretty straightforward case. We made recommendations for charges to be filed that the Attorney General has instead chosen to reject,' the source said. Both Mr Ali and Prime Minister Razak have so far declined to comment on the decision to drop the investigation. Source: Reuters UK; BBC UK

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