Bottom line: Amar’s press conference on 1MDB probe was as good as no press conference at all

The total items seized from residences related to Datuk Seri Najib Razak in May over a probe into 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) have been valued between RM900 million to RM1.1 billion.

Federal Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) director Datuk Seri Amar Singh Ishar Singh said the items were seized from various locations in Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.

Amar said police do not expect to make any arrests soon. However, he said they will call Najib and his wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, to have their statements recorded for an investigation, linked to 1MDB.

TTF: Bottom line, PDRM spent weeks “sleeping in bed” with the items but has yet to narrow down their value-range. Moreover, not only was the method of valuation kept secret, the force has yet to ascertain if indeed those items were purchased using money Pakatan Harapan insists was stolen from 1MDB. In short, it was a dumb and meaningless press conference by Amar Singh Ishar Singh, though I don’t really blame him for it.

At the end of the day, he had his orders, which likely came from Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

KUALA LUMPUR: The total items seized from residences related to Datuk Seri Najib Razak in May over a probe into 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) have been valued at around RM1.1 billion.

The seized items include cash, jewellery, branded watches and handbags, as well as designer sunglasses.

Addressing a packed press conference at Bukit Aman, Federal Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) director Datuk Seri Amar Singh Ishar Singh said the items were seized from various locations in Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.

He said a large number of items were seized from several condominium units at the Pavilion Residences in Bukit Bintang. Some of the items were also from Najib’s residence in Jalan Langgak Duta, Taman Duta.

Also checked was Najib’s office in the Prime Minister’s Department and the prime minister’s official residence in Seri Perdana.

Amar said the haul totaled 72 pieces of luggage containing cash, jewellery and watches, and 284 boxes of watches, taken from nine locations. Twenty five of the bags, he said, contained jewellery such as rings, diamonds, earrings and bracelets.

There were 12,00 pieces of jewellery in total, comprising among others, 1,400 necklaces, 2,200 rings, 2,800 pairs of earrings, 1,600 brooches and 14 tiaras.

“The most valuable piece of jewellery is believed to be a gold white diamond necklace, estimated to be worth RM6.4 million,” he said.

Police also seized a total of 567 handbags of 37 different designer brands such as Hermes, Prada and Chanel.

From the total, 272 were from Hermes. Police have so far only managed to assess the value of the Hermes bags, which are believed to be worth RM51.3 million.

The most expensive handbag in the collection, he said, was believed to be worth RM1.6 million.

Amar said also seized was a custom-made Bijan bag, which was among the most expensive items.

“This brand of bags are exclusive and custom-made. You can’t find them in shops or boutiques because there will only be one piece produced by the designer, or when requested by a customer,” he said, adding that police also seized 374 designer sunglasses.

Also seized were 423 watches from luxury brands such as Rolex, Cecil Purnell, Patek Philippe and Richard Mille, estimated to be worth RM78 million in total.

The most valuable timepiece, he said, was a rare Rolex ‘Paul Newman’ Daytona, estimated to be worth RM3.5 million.

Amar said, including the cash seizure of RM116.7 million, the total value of the seized items were between RM900 million to RM 1.1billion.

He said eight special teams comprising experts and officers were involved in the counting and valuation process. The team took 36 days (May 21 to June 25) to conduct their tally and assessment due to the large number of items.

Many of the items, he said, had to be valued by experts from abroad.

“Eight special teams comprising experts and officers were involved in the counting process, totaling 150 personnel,” he said.

Amar said police do not expect to make any arrests soon. However, he said they will call Najib and his wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, to have their statements recorded for an investigation, linked to 1MDB.

Amar Singh said police have so far recorded more than 30 statements over its investigation, which is being conducted under the Anti-Money Laundering Act.

Source: NST Online

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