GEORGE TOWN: The RM15mil mansion of businessman Low Taek Jho in Tanjung Bungah Park is still well maintained, although the family has not lived there since he became a fugitive about seven years ago.
Neighbours said two maids and a driver are still looking after the three-storey bungalow and various cars after the family moved out.
Sources said the family’s office in Penang is still paying the workers their wages.
In 2019, deputy public prosecutor Syafinas Shabudin ordered the house seized and submitted a forfeiture application to take control of the property.
Two years later, the High Court said the property, registered under Puan Sri Goh Gaik Ewe, had no links to unlawful activities.
Goh and her husband, Tan Sri Larry Low Hock Peng, have been named by Bukit Aman as persons of interest in the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) investigations.
Goh’s counsel M. Puravalen said the prosecution failed to explain why and didn’t produce substantial evidence to support their allegations that Goh was involved in or participated in any illegal transaction or activity.
“Goh owns the said property at Tanjung Bungah Park, Tanjung Tokong, but the seizure notice was issued and served on the Penang Land Office.
“However, no averments were made regarding the house, and there was no explanation on how the house is related to any illegal proceeds or misappropriated funds,” Puravalen said.
As such, he said the prosecution, representing the government, had failed to establish any facts explaining the house’s involvement in the predicate offence or any unlawful activities.
The 30,000 sq ft (2,800 sq m) house, built on two plots of land measuring over 20,000 sq ft (1,900 sq m), was constructed in 1990.
The Covid-19 pandemic hasn’t affected the value of the house negatively.
Residential properties in Tanjung Bungah Park are still valued between RM500 and RM600 per sq ft.
“Tanjung Bungah Park is a prime residential neighbourhood, but it is not the most expensive on the island.
“Some residential properties in Pulau Tikus, for example, have recently been transacted at about RM700 per sq ft because of their proximity to town,” a real estate agent said.