Fugitive businessperson Low Taek Jho has disappeared from Malaysia since 2015 immediately after the revelation of the 1MDB corruption scandal which implicates a group of Malaysian high ranked officials, particularly the former Prime Minister Najib Razak.
This Malaysian corruption case and the disappearance of Low have sparked a storm of controversy in the Malaysian media and political circles.
Joe Low is accused of having laundered billions of dollars from a Malaysian sovereign fund.
Some speculations claim he had obtained political asylum in the UAE. Others say he obtained a passport from Cyprus, an island state in the Mediterranean, in 2015. Yet some said that he was in a Middle Eastern country.
The latest news, according to Cypriot daily Politis, Low Low had arrived in Cyprus on Sept 18, 2015, and obtained his passport and citizenship through the council of ministers two days later under an investment scheme after investing in some property in the Famagusta district around €5 million (RM23.2 million).
Malaysian police chief Abdul Hamid Bader Neveh, however, was quoted by the official Malaysian News Agencies as saying Joe Low’s presence in the UAE is an utter lie and a folktale.
“It is illogical and impossible for a person wanted by a number of countries and known for his extensive involvement in money laundering to have entered the UAE,” he said.
Malaysian police are also said to know his whereabouts and they invited him to return to his country if he was confident that he was not guilty and did not commit a crime.
Malaysian Attorney General promised that the defendant would receive a fair trial if he decided to return to Malaysia.
Joe Low is widely known in Malaysia and USA as the mastermind of 1MDB corruption deals (billions of dollars in money laundering) which are linked to Former Prime Minister Najib Razak, who was also the then Finance Minister.
The US Department of Justice believed that at least US$4.5 billion has been misappropriated from 1MDB and is working with Malaysia to recover the allegedly stolen funds.
Former Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak is standing trial over the alleged theft while Low is still on the run.