CASINO FIRM SNAPS UP 1MDB SUPERYACHT ON THE CHEAP
A SUPERYACHT once owned by a playboy businessman at the heart of a Malaysia corruption scandal is being sold by the authorities for £96m.
The 300ft Equanimity, complete with swimming pool, spa, cinema and helipad, was owned by globetrotting financier Jho Low (pictured with singer Alicia Keys), but has now been snapped up by a casino firm.
Old Harrovian Low, who is on the run, allegedly bought it with money embezzled from Malaysia’s 1MDB sovereign wealth fund in a £2.1bn fraud.
The sale came as Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak went on trial for his alleged role in the scandal. Razak, who is accused of pocketing £522m from the sovereign wealth fund, denied seven charges.
The Equanimity was seized by police last year and has been auctioned off
to recover some of the money claimed to have been stolen. Casino operator Genting bought it at a considerably lower price than the £190m Low reportedly paid in 2013, but there was pressure on the authorities to sell due to maintenance costs of more than £500,000 a month. Low, 37, is believed to be in China. The 1MDB scandal roped in Goldman Sachs, which worked for the fund, and led to the conviction of former top banker Tim Leissner.