Media Statement: AGC - In Relation To The Decision To Close The BNM's Investigation on 1MDB
The alleged offence investigated into by Bank Negara Malaysia is
paragraph (4)(b) of Part 1 of the Fifth Schedule to the Exchange Control
Act 1953 namely, knowingly or recklessly making a statement which is
false in a material particular. In short the statement made must be false and
material to the subject matter i.e. the information requested by Bank
Negara Malaysia at the time when the application/s for remittances were
sought for and in response to further information requested by Bank
1MDB obtained three permissions from Bank Negara Malaysia to make
remittances, namely on,
(1) 29 September 2009,
(2) 6 September 2010, and
(3) 20 May 2011.
It is noted that Bank Negara Malaysia did not take more than three days
to grant the said permissions on all three occasions.
It is further noted that the relevant ECM forms namely 09A and 06B do not
require the applicant to supply the name/s of beneficiary owner or the
bank/s accounts numbers of the recipient/s or the manner as to how
the funds to be channeled.
When 1MDB requested Deutsche Bank (Malaysia) Berhad to remit to a
different account, Deutsche Bank (Malaysia) Berhad sought clarification
from Bank Negara Malaysia and Bank Negara Malaysia responded by
advising Deutsche Bank (Malaysia) Berhad that it being a business
decision and as long as there was no deviation from the purpose intended
and no further query was made by Bank Negara Malaysia at that particular
Bank Negara Malaysia being the controller did not stop the remittance or
direct Deutsche Bank (Malaysia) Berhad to advise 1MDB to revert to Bank
Negara Malaysia for a review of the permission. Clearly there was no
information or further information requested by Bank Negara Malaysia at
that material time. 1MBD rightfully furnished the information required for the
purpose of the remittance.
The relevant forms for remittance in this case did not require the applicant
to state the bank account number and the beneficiary of the same as in
ordinary remittances which would enable Bank Negara Malaysia to go one
step further to verify where the funds will end up to. Since there is no
requirement, the omission on 1MDB officials part to disclose is not an
offence under the Act.
As far as 1MDB is concerned it needs to fill up the relevant form and
responds to the queries by Bank Negara Malaysia. If Bank Negara
Malaysia does not request for certain or specific information how could
1MDB be faulted as it has filled up the form as required and responded to
the queries made?
The officials of 1MDB at all material times i.e. during the process of
obtaining the permissions had complied with the directions given, hence
the permissions/approvals granted. Until and unless it can be shown that
the officials had deliberately or knew or even recklessly provided
information that were false in material particulars, they had committed no
offence under this Act.
The Bank Negara Malaysia however vide a letter dated 1 October 2015
requested for a review of the decision citing omission on the part of 1MDB
i.e. non-disclosure of certain information. As far as omission is concerned,
there is no obligation to inform unless requested. In this respect and the
fact that there is no new evidence made available, we do not see the
necessity to review.
ATTORNEY GENERALS CHAMBERS MALAYSIA
13 OCTOBER 2015