Swiss NGO Bruno Manser Fund today released a list of 49 companies located across four continents around the globe, which it claims are linked to Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud and his family.
The list includes 13 companies in Malaysia, 10 in Australia, nine in Canada, seven in Hong Kong, four in the United States, three in the British Virgin Islands, one on the island of Jersey and two in the United Kingdom.
"The intention of the black list is to help the listed countries' anti-corruption and anti-money-laundering authorities to identify and freeze illicit Taib assets in their countries," the organisation said in a press statement today.
The list is published on its new anti-corruption website and is to be updated regularly.
BMF has also launched an online petition on the website, urging the authorities in the respective countries to investigate Taib and his family's financial dealings and freeze their assets for subsequent restitution to the people of Sarawak.
The petition, which will be sent to the authorities in Australia, the British Virgin Islands, Canada, Hong Kong, Jersey, Malaysia, the UK and the US as well as to the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering, currently has 139 signatures.
Among the Malaysian companies listed are Borsarmulu Resort Sdn Bhd, Cahya Mata Sarawak Sdn Bhd, K&N Kenanga, Kumpulan Parabena Sdn Bhd, Mesti Bersatu Sdn Bhd, Sarawak Energy Bhd, Naim Holdings and Ta Ann Group.
Some of these companies are partly-owned by the state and are involved in state-supported projects such as the Royal Mulu Resort (above) and Murum dam.
Multimillion-ringgit property companies
A considerable number of the companies listed are property development companies, including Sakti International Corporation Incorporated, which is located in the United States.
Documents published by whistleblower website Sarawak Report show that this company is worth about RM250 million.
Also listed is a Canadian group of companies, Sakto, about which Sarawak Report posted documents to prove Sakto owns property worth in excess of RM300 million.
Similar calls have been made by BMF to various European Union countries to freeze assets belonging to ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.
All the countries in which the companies listed by BMF are located, including Malaysia, are signatories to and have ratified the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC).
UNCAC signatories are obliged to coordinate with one another and provide mutual legal assistance in cases of funds connected with crime, even to the extent of extraditing the persons accused.
Taken from Malaysia Today.