Ex-PM Najib and former 1MDB chief Arul Kanda plead not guilty to tampering of audit report

Reuters

Former Malaysia prime minister Najib Razak and the ex-chief of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) Arul Kanda Kandasamy have both claimed trail to charges related to the tampering a 1MDB audit report by pleading not guilty.

Najib and Arul Kanda were both charged at a Sessions Court on Wednesday (Dec 12) morning, The Star reported.

According to The Star, Najib is alleged to have ordered the tampering of a final audit report on the troubled state fund in 2016.

The judge granted Najib bail at RM500,000 (US$120,000), with one surety.

New Straits Times (NST) reported that the 65-year-old remained calm as the charge was read out.

Arul Kanda, who was earlier in the morning charged with abetting Najib, was also granted bail at RM500,000, The Star said.

The 41-year-old will also need to surrender his passport to the court for bail, NST reported.

If convicted, both men could face a maximum of 20 years in jail, and a fine of at least five times the amount of gratification, or RM 10,000, the report said.

Last month, Auditor-General Tan Sri Madinah Mohamad alleged that parts of a final audit report on 1MDB – which mentioned fugitive Low Taek Jho – were deleted.

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