US to charge man behind push to drop 1MDB probe, says report

The meeting was “meant in part” so Najib could press Trump about ending the 1MDB case.

(FMT) – US federal prosecutors are set to charge a Republican fundraiser over alleged efforts to influence the US government on behalf of foreign interests, including in the 1MDB scandal.

According to a Washington Post report which cited sources, Elliott Broidy is being investigated for his alleged role in a campaign to persuade top officials in US President Donald Trump’s administration to drop investigations into 1MDB.

He is also under scrutiny for pushing for extradition of Guo Wengui, a vocal critic of Beijing, back to China.

The case against Broidy has intensified in recent weeks after prosecutors secured a guilty plea from one of his associates, a woman named Nickie Mali Lum Davis.

Davis has admitted to taking part in what prosecutors call a “back-channel lobbying campaign” to end the investigation into 1MDB and return Chinese exile Guo to his home country.

The report said that according to court documents filed over Davis’ guilty plea, Broidy allegedly lobbied to have Guo deported from the US at the request of Low Taek Jho, or Jho Low, and an unnamed Chinese government official.

Low is a central figure in the 1MDB scandal. He is accused of funnelling tens of millions of dollars as part of efforts to get the 1MDB case dropped.

The fugitive businessman, who is believed to be in China, has denied allegations made against him.

According to the report, Davis acknowledged that she helped route a US$8 million retainer to Broidy for the “campaign” and that Low offered a US$75 million bonus as part of the contract with the law firm of Broidy’s wife’s if the 1MDB case was resolved within 180 days.

Documents in Davis’ guilty plea show that Broidy messaged Trump’s former deputy campaign chairman, Rick Gates, and then chief of staff Reince Priebus in 2017 about arranging a visit for former prime minister Najib Razak and a possible golfing session with Trump.

Najib did visit but did not golf with Trump, and according to the court documents, the meeting was “meant in part” so Najib could press Trump about ending the 1MDB case.