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Ex-Goldman banker Ng sentenced to 10 years over 1MDB scandal

Ng was found guilty last year of helping his former boss Tim Leissner embezzle money from the sovereign wealth fund.

Former Goldman Sachs banker Roger Ng has been sentenced to 10 years in prison after being convicted of helping to loot billions of dollars from Malaysia’s 1MDB sovereign wealth fund.

A jury in Brooklyn federal court last April found Ng, Goldman’s former head of investment banking in Malaysia, guilty of helping his former boss Tim Leissner embezzle money from the fund, launder the proceeds and bribe government officials to bring in business.

The cost comes from about $6.5 billion in bonds Goldman helped 1MDB, which was set up to fund development projects in Malaysia, sell in 2012 and 2013.

US prosecutors said $4.5 billion of that amount was embezzled by officials, bankers and their associates, in one of the biggest scandals in Wall Street history. The money was used to buy luxury real estate, jewelry and artwork, and to finance the Hollywood movie The Wolf of Wall Street, according to the Justice Department.

The scandal also rocked Malaysian politics. Former Prime Minister Najib Razak is serving a 12-year prison sentence after being convicted by a Malaysian court of receiving $10 million from a former 1MDB unit.

Najib has consistently denied wrongdoing.

In a filing last week, federal prosecutors in Brooklyn urged Brodie to sentence Ng to 15 years in prison, calling him a “deeply corrupt banker” and arguing that a harsh sentence was needed to dissuade other financial professionals. to deter government officials from bribing to do business.

“Foreign corruption undermines public confidence in international markets and institutions,” the prosecutors wrote. “It destroys people’s trust in their leaders and it’s very unfair to everyone else who plays by the rules.”

In his own sentencing request on February 25, Ng asked for no jail time and permission to return to Malaysia. He spent six months in a Malaysian prison before waiving his right to challenge his extradition to the United States in 2018.

Ng had pleaded not guilty, arguing that the $35 million bribe he allegedly received was, in fact, a return on an investment his wife had made.

Leissner had been Goldman’s chief in Southeast Asia. He pleaded guilty and testified against Ng as part of a cooperation agreement. He hasn’t been convicted yet.

Jho Low, a Malaysian financier and suspected mastermind of the scheme, was charged alongside Ng in 2018 but remains at large. Malaysian officials have said Low is in China, which Beijing denies.