KOTA KINABALU: Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador says that an “irresponsible” country continues to protect Low Taek Jho or Jho Low from being repatriated and a possibility of him having undergone plastic surgery to evade arrest.
Abdul Hamid said the country was taking an approach of not giving any assistance to Malaysia and making it difficult to repatriate the fugitive businessman wanted for the 1Malaysia Development Bhd scandal.
“We have requested this country to extradite him. It seems he is enjoying immunity there.
“We have made different approaches to get him sent back, but they (the country concerned) always gave different reasons and even claimed he had undergone plastic surgery, ” he told reporters after presenting certificates of appreciation to 16 personnel at the 14th battalion of the General Operations Force in Tawau yesterday.
“I am still engaging with the authorities there. Whatever conditions they are asking, I am ready to listen but the main thing is we want Jho Low back, ” he said.
He said police would continue their efforts to bring the suspect back to Malaysia by year-end.
He said all countries must work together and not protect criminals with political links.
“We are investigating a crime. He has robbed a country and is now being protected in another country, ” he said.
Abdul Hamid said police were investigating claims of Jho Low having a Cypriot passport.
“We have received the information, he is exploiting the country that needs money for their economy, ” he said.
The Star previously reported that Jho Low may have assumed a new identity to evade arrest after his superyacht Equanimity was seized by Indonesian authorities in February 2018.
The police and immigration authorities in Malaysia and Singapore believe Low could have had facial reconstruction surgery, altered his features and has assumed an alias.
Investigators do not have Low’s latest pictures and those in their possession were taken before 2015, making it a real challenge to track him down physically.
Meanwhile, Abdul Hamid said on claims that some Sosma suspects allegedly involved in LTTE activities were abused during police detention, their lawyers should lodge a police report and make a complaint to the judge.