Najib’s stepson, whose firm produced ‘Wolf of Wall Street’, pleads not guilty to 1MDB money laundering

Riza Aziz, stepson of former Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak, arrives at a court in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia July 5, 2019.
Reuters

The Hollywood producer stepson of Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak has pleaded not guilty to five charges of money laundering, The Star reported on Friday (July 5).

Riza Aziz, a co-founder of Red Granite Pictures, is accused of receiving a total of US$248 million (RM1.02 billion) from the misappropriation of 1MDB funds, Reuters reported.

The Star reported that the money was allegedly transferred to Red Granite Pictures via Jho Low-linked Good Star Ltd and Aabar Investments PJS Ltd.

Riza is accused of committing the offences in the United States and Singapore between April 12, 2011 and November 14, 2012, The Star added.

Red Granite Pictures, which produced the “The Wolf Of Wall Street” starring Leonardo DiCaprio, had in 2017 paid the US government US$60 million to settle a civil forfeiture claim over the rights to the hit movie.

It is believed that the firm financed three films using funds allegedly stolen from 1MDB.

According to Reuters, each charge Riza faces carries a financial penalty of up to RM5 million, up to five years in jail, or both.

Bail was granted at RM1 million.

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