Whistleblower site Sarawak Report claimed today the Century Banking Corporation Ltd, the first and only islamic Bank in Mauritius, is chaired by an individual who has intricate links with Malaysian financial and party-goer Jho Low.
Low is a fugitive who is on top the FBI list of suspects involved in the 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal, biggest money laundering case in the world’s financial history.
The whistleblower site said Thai millionaire Phengphian Laogunmerd, who is also the Chairman of the Century Banking Corp is a close ally and family member of Mr Low.
The suspicions now are that part of the US$4 billion to US$6 billion siphoned from the 1MDB in Malaysia is now stashed in the Century bank.
It is said that Low had planned way back in May 2015, just as the heat was really cranking up on 1MDB and on his conspirators at BSI Bank, Jho Low had mooted to Abu Dhabi’s US Ambassador and business partner, Sheikh Yousef Otaiba, that he needed to purchase his own bank to handle all the money he was funelling through the system (money from 1MDB).
Jho was at the time looking at a Barbados off-shore institution as the perfect vehicle, according to Otaiba’s Swiss banker Tobias Pfister, who reported that Jho now “felt compelled to buy a bank as a parking spot for his funds, as well as his friends and family”. Jho was looking at Amicorp Barbados which was 70% up for sale for $15 million:
Why is Leogumnerd and the Century Banking Corp targeted?
Leogumnerd, who runs a software contractor, Songkhla Finishing and has recently become involved in venture capital in Indonesia, is now said to have aided Mr Low – while the latter is on the run from the FBI and American investigators – by taking over a company bought by the Malaysian.
The company is Myla Underwear, and Leogumnerd is now the owner of the company after the US said with evidence that Mr Low bought the company with 1MDB money, money which the US, Switzerland, Singapore and many other jurisdictions said were stolen from the Malaysian sovereign development fund.
However, it seems that Jho’s young friend Leogumnerd was not deterred by the idea of getting into the line of business himself. Perhaps inspired by Low he has taken over another off-shore bank, Century Banking Corporation in Mauritius, becoming a director in November 2016 and Chairman in February of this year.
Surprisingly, given that Phengphiang Laogumnerd is Thai, he has chosen to put himself at the head of the island’s first and only Islamic bank:
A number of key personnel at the bank appear to have Malaysian connections. So, we trust that Mr Leogumnerd’s continuing friendship and association with his pal Jho Low has not extended to housing any of his illicit money in his new off-shore Islamic bank!