Justo paid US2 million bribe to keep mouth shut

Following is an article published by The Edge Markets complete with responses by TTF (in blue):


The Edge Media Group chairman Datuk Tong Kooi Ong has gifted whistle-blower Xavier Andre Justo RM8.2 million (US$2 million) for his help in exposing wrong-doings at 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB).


TTF: Actually, the reporting is quite inaccurate.

Truth is, sometime in April 2017, Tong’s subordinate and Anwar-aide-turned-Mahathirist, Ho Kay Tat, offered Justo a US2 million bribe for data that the former PetroSaudi employee ripped off his ex-boss’ database.

On the 21st of May 2018, TTF wrote:

Xavier Andre Justo is the man who stole critical data from PetroSaudi, an oil and services company he was once an executive in. He then tried to blackmail his former employers to the tune of millions by threatening to sell the data to third parties. When his bosses lodged a police report against him for theft and extortion, he tried to sell the data to the media for some millions instead.

One of the media correspondents who attempted to get a hold of the data was the Chairman of the Edge Media Group, Dato’ Tong Kooi Ong. The other was Clare Rewcastle Brown, the lady who runs Sarawak Report. In a couple of WhatsApp messages that went viral, a person believed to be Clare made it known that she had the backing of Dr Mahathir Mohamad when attempting to pacify Justo over failed payments.

The ex-PetroSaudi employee was eventually arrested by the Thai police and tried for extortion. The trial led to a three-year jail sentence that Justo began serving before the new King of Thailand granted him a pardon. The fact that he didn’t refuse the pardon amounted to a guilty plea on his part. Yet today, he stands tall alongside Mahathir amid raids on property units purportedly conducted to discover funds stolen from 1MDB.

One version has it that Ho paid Clare US3 million and tasked her with handing over two-thirds of the sum to Justo.

In this version, Clare gave Justo the impression that he had been cheated by telling him that Ho and Tong were delaying payments.

Justo was unaware of Clare’s US1 million share or the fact that his US2 million was with her.

This implies that the Sarawak Report Chief Editor had walloped both Justo’s and her share of the payout.

Another version has it that Tong did indeed cheat both Justo and Clare.

Either way, for Tong to have suddenly come up with the money, my informant must have spoken the truth.

Some weeks back, I was told that Justo, a convicted extortionist, had in his possession evidence that could implicate Mahathir of criminal wrongdoing.

That would help explain why Mahathir found it necessary to seek Justo’s assistance right after Pakatan Harapan won the 14th general election (GE14).

I was told that Mahathir was arranging for US2-3 million to be paid to Justo just to keep the latter’s mouth shut.

Justo, his wife Laura and four-year-old son Zander, visited The Edge Media Group’s office in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, on Jan 31, where they met Tong and group publisher and CEO Ho Kay Tat.

“The gift to Justo is in appreciation of his contribution to Malaysia in helping to expose the kleptocracy of the past Government,” said Tong. “Without him, the wrongdoings involving 1MDB, as exposed by The Edge, would not have come to light.”

TTF: It was not a gift, but bribe money.

It could well be that Tong forked out US4 million in total, US2 million of which was stolen by Clare.

Based on what I’ve been told, it is highly likely that the latest US2 million payout originated from Mahathir himself.

The exposés that started in March 2015 led to a global investigation in the US, Switzerland and Singapore that revealed that as much as US$6.5 billion belonging to 1MDB had been stolen.

TTF: Actually, they were not exposes per se.

The data that Justo stole from PetroSaudi was doctored before it was bundled together with information former British Premier Tony Blair obtained from his associates and ‘colleagues’ in Goldman Sachs, Mubadala, PetroSaudi and JPMorgan Chase & Co.

On the 21st of August 2018, I wrote:

A team from the US I used to deal with claimed that they had traced the leak of information to an individual subordinate to the current CEO of the Maybank Kim Eng Group (MKEG), Dato’ John Chong. Back in March 2013 when the leak took place, the 13thMalaysian general election was slated to be around the corner. Chong was yet the CEO of Maybank Investment Bank Berhad and was a year away from becoming MKEG’s acting head.

I am told, the Maybank official fed Cavanagh’s associate (Cavanagh is the co-CEO of JP Morgan) everything that needed to be known about the syndicated loan and a lot more. Blair went on to channel that information to Qubaisi, who in turn, passed it over to a group of Emirati businessmen. With the wealth of information, Qubaisi was able to plan his moves very carefully, knowing well in advance that 1MDB was positioned precariously and would crumble if it defaulted any of its loans.

The Maybank official was receiving instructions from someone in the Ministry of Finance. It seems that a group of Malaysian bankers were already involved in a conspiracy to sabotage 1MDB even before Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad got involved.

And yes, there was talk of a ‘reward’ in the event 1MDB was reduced to insolvency.

The US Department of Justice described it as the largest case of kleptocracy it had ever uncovered.

Justo paid a heavy price for providing information to The Edge as well as Sarawak Report, which showed billions were stolen from 1MDB under the guise of a joint venture with PetroSaudi International between 2009 and 2011.

Justo was arrested in June 2015 on blackmail charges, paraded in front of selected media in Bangkok as if he was a hardcore criminal, and then incarcerated in a Thai prison for 18 months.

TTF: That’s because it was proven he had ripped data off his former boss’ computer.

Justo confessed to his crimes and even admitted that he tried to extort money from his former boss and several other individuals.

Adapted from: The Edge Markets

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