Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Declare your foreign assets, environmental group dares Taib


BY DESMOND DAVIDSON 
SEPTEMBER 25, 2013
A Swiss environmental group that has been hounding Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud for years has called on him to declare all foreign assets held by him and his closest family members and explain their origins.
The Bruno Manser Fund’s latest demand comes in the wake of its unsuccessful push for the Office of the Attorney General of Switzerland to open criminal proceedings against the Sarawak chief minister and Swiss banks for allegedly supporting him.
The Swiss AG's Office confirmed yesterday that two of the Sarawak chief minister's family members held assets with a Swiss bank until 1999 when the assets were withdrawn.
The Swiss prosecutors' investigation had been triggered by a criminal complaint made by BMF and Swiss MP Carlo Sommaruga.
The Swiss prosecutors said they would not open criminal proceedings against the four banks because none of them were administering any Taib family assets as of today.
In demanding the declaration, BMF said there is a particular need for Taib to clarify the amount and whereabouts of the assets that were withdrawn in 1999.
In June 2011, the chief minister declared in the Sarawak State Assembly that he had no Swiss bank account.
BMF said their research showed Taib's closest family members are holding stakes in Malaysian corporations worth US$1.5 billion (RM4.74 billion) and hundreds of millions of dollars in properties in Canada, the US, the UK and Australia.
BMF claimed the family's total assets are estimated at US$15 billion (RM47.4billion).
The Swiss prosecutors also confirmed yesterday that a criminal proceedings against Swiss bank UBS is still on-going for the alleged laundering of US$90 million (RM284million) on behalf of Sabah chief minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman.
The proceeding was opened in August 2012 following a criminal complaint by BMF. - September 25, 2013.
~ The Malaysian Insider

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