‘I feel hor­ri­ble ex-staff broke law in 1MDB case’

> Gold­man Sachs CEO says it is ‘very dis­tress­ing’ to see two for­mer em­ploy­ees went so bla­tantly around com­pany poli­cies

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPEAK UP -

SIN­GA­PORE: Gold­man Sachs chief ex­ec­u­tive David Solomon said yes­ter­day he felt “hor­ri­ble” that two for­mer em­ploy­ees “bla­tantly broke the law” in their deal­ings with Malaysian state fund 1Malaysia De­vel­op­ment Bhd (1MDB).

US pros­e­cu­tors filed crim­i­nal charges against the two for­mer Gold­man bankers and a Malaysian fi­nancier linked to the al­leged theft of bil­lions of dol­lars from the fund.

An in­ves­ti­ga­tion into where 1MDB’s money went be­came the largest car­ried out by the De­part­ment of Jus­tice un­der its anti-klep­toc­racy pro­gramme, and the scan­dal was a ma­jor rea­son why Malaysian vot­ers re­jected Datuk Seri Na­jib Ab­dul Razak, their prime min­is­ter for nearly a decade, in an elec­tion ear­lier this year.

“It is ob­vi­ously very dis­tress­ing to see two for­mer Gold­man Sachs em­ploy­ees went so bla­tantly around our poli­cies and so bla­tantly broke the law,” Solomon said in an in­ter­view with Bloomberg TV in Sin­ga­pore.

“I feel hor­ri­ble about the fact that peo­ple who worked at Gold­man Sachs, and it doesn’t mat­ter whether it’s a part­ner or it’s an en­try level em­ployee, would go around our poli­cies and break the law,” Solomon said.

US pros­e­cu­tors an­nounced last week that Tim Leiss­ner, for­mer part­ner for Gold­man Sachs in Asia, had pleaded guilty to con­spir­acy to laun­der money and con­spir­acy to vi­o­late the For­eign Cor­rupt Prac­tices Act, and agreed to for­feit US$43.7 mil­lion (RM182.2 mil­lion).

Roger Ng, the other charged for­mer Gold­man banker, was ar­rested in Malaysia and is ex­pected to be ex­tra­dited.

Reuters was not im­me­di­ately able to con­tact Ng’s lawyer yes­ter­day. His lawyer did not im­me­di­ately re­spond to a re­quest for com­ment af­ter US pros­e­cu­tors un­veiled the charges last Thurs­day.

Gold­man has also placed its for­mer co-head of Asia in­vest­ment bank­ing, An­drea Vella, on leave over his role in the firm’s in­volve­ment with the case, pend­ing a re­view of

al­le­ga­tions, ac­cord­ing to a per­son fa­mil­iar with the de­ci­sion.

The Wall Street bank said in a se­cu­ri­ties fil­ing on Fri­day that it may also face penal­ties from deal­ings with 1MDB. – Reuters

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