Lembah Pantai MP: Why can’t Bank Negara, Bukit Aman track money trail of scam masterminds like they did 1MDB funds?

KUALA LUMPUR, June 15 — Lembah Pantai MP Fahmi Fadzil today questioned the ability of Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) and the police to tackle scams in the country, saying neither had been able to bring the masterminds behind the rackets to book.

His comments came after it was reported recently that RM3.3 billion worth of assets had been lost to online scams in Malaysia, from 2017 to 2021.

The PKR communications director also questioned why the government had not conducted a forensic audit of the money trail to ascertain its destination, even if those nabbed for the scams were only “mules” or “account holders”, and not the architects of the con.

“For example, as in the 1MDB case involving (Datuk Seri) Najib Razak, the money went to shell company accounts (that can be considered a mule as well) before eventually allegedly entering Najib Razak’s account.

“If bankers can find the money trail in the case of Najib Razak’s 1MDB, which amounts to billions of ringgits across various countries and financial institutions, will the banks, especially Bank Negara and Bukit Aman not be able to identify who are the final beneficiaries of these stolen monies?” he asked in a Facebook post.

As for where the money ended up, Fahmi suggested it was used for other criminal activities.

“Where is the justice for the 100,000 victims who were scammed?” he said.

On March 10, it was reported that a total of 98,607 cases of online fraud with losses estimated at RM3.3 billion were reported nationwide for the period between 2017 and last year.

Bukit Aman Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) assistant director (telecommunications criminal investigation) Supt Rozeni Ismail said during that period more than 30,000 individuals were detained, and from the number, 25,000 individuals were charged in court.

He said most of the cases involved the Macau Scam, online sales and purchases, non-existent money loans and love scams.