Goldman Sachs Group has appointed a lawyer to observe the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) trial of Najib Razak, Malaysia’s former Prime Minister, reported Bloomberg.
The US bank is represented by local lawyer Chetan Jethwani, who will hold a watching brief in the hearing set to begin 26 August 20198, according to a Kuala Lumpur court. A watching brief lets lawyers, whose clients are not directly involved in the case, obtain witness statements and documents in the trial but doesn’t allow them to question witnesses or submit evidence.
Malaysia escalated efforts to prosecute Goldman Sachs by announcing criminal charges against 17 of its current and former directors, after charging three of the bank’s units last year. Attorney-General Tommy Thomas accused the Wall Street firm of misleading investors when arranging $6.5 billion of bond sales for troubled state fund 1MDB, which lies at the centre of dozens of charges against Najib.
Najib’s second trial revolves around 25 money laundering and corruption charges linked to joint ventures, asset sales and debt issuance by 1MDB.