1MDB trial: I'm not aware of Zeti-Jho Low connection, Loo testifies

KUALA LUMPUR: Former 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) general counsel Jasmine Loo told the High Court here she had no knowledge of any business connection between the spouse of former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz and fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho, or Jho Low.

Loo, however, confirmed that Jho Low had mentioned Zeti's name on many occasions by saying that he would "take care" of the latter in matters arising at the central bank concerning 1MDB funds.

ALSO READ: 1MDB trial: Loo denies being part of 'inner circle conspiracy' against Najib

She said this on Friday (April 5) under cross-examination by counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, representing former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak who allegedly misappropriated RM2.3bil from 1MDB.

Muhammad Shafee: Are you aware in the trial of (former Goldman Sachs banker) Tim Leissner in the United States, he said things could be approved overnight because of Jho Low's association with Zeti.

Loo: I do not know.

Muhammad Shafee previously suggested that Jho Low had a close relationship with Zeti’s husband Datuk Tawfiq Ayman as they both attended the prestigious Wharton Business School in the United States.

The senior lawyer even suggested that Low used to cook pasta at Zeti’s house near Bukit Tunku on weekends, a claim that Zeti refuted when testifying in the same trial on Aug 15 last year.

ALSO READ: Loo says she did not make any deal to testify against Najib

Meanwhile, starting this month, the High Court here will for the first time preside over the 1MDB trial on a Saturday.

Justice Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah has fixed April 27, May 4 and 25 as well as June 1, 8 and 15 for additional dates to hear the case.

The dates were confirmed after both parties finished examining Loo, who was on the stand since Feb 13.

Loo was supposed to be the final witness in the trial but is subject to be recalled, if the need arises.

ALSO READ: 1MDB trial: Shafee disputes Loo's claim that directors followed Najib's orders blindly

Following the conclusion of the cross-examination and re-examination on Loo, several other prosecution witnesses are waiting to be recalled for cross-examination and re-examination, namely Zeti, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) senior officer Nur Aida Ariffin, 1MDB former director and chairman Tan Sri Ismee Ismail as well as Tan Sri Mohd Bakke Salleh.

Najib, 70, faces four charges of using his position (as prime minister) to obtain bribes totalling RM2.3bil from 1MDB funds and 21 charges of money laundering involving the same amount.

The trial before Justice Sequerah continues on April 22. – Bernama

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