US sentencing of Malaysian unit to trigger Goldman Sachs’ remaining US$1.26b payment to Putrajaya

According to Bloomberg, details of the 10-day deadline for Goldman to make the payment came to light in a June 4 filing by the US government in a federal court in Brooklyn, New York. — Reuters pic
According to Bloomberg, details of the 10-day deadline for Goldman to make the payment came to light in a June 4 filing by the US government in a federal court in Brooklyn, New York. — Reuters pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, June 9 ― New-York based financial institution Goldman Sachs Group Inc will have 10 days to pay the Malaysian government the remaining US$1.26 billion (RM5.18 billion) of a US$2.5 billion penalty as its subsidiary, Goldman Sachs (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd (GS Malaysia), is due to be sentenced by a US District Court this week.

According to Bloomberg, details of the 10-day deadline for Goldman to make the payment came to light in a June 4 filing by the US government in a federal court in Brooklyn, New York.

In October last year, Goldman Sachs entered into a deferred prosecution agreement with the US Department of Justice in connection with a criminal information filed in the Eastern District of New York charging the company with conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

The aforementioned agreement allowed the bank to defer prosecution as long as it continues to cooperate with US authorities and submits compliance reports.

The department’s Office of Public Affairs previously said GS Malaysia has since pleaded guilty in the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York to one-count criminal information charging it with conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA.

Goldman Sachs and its Malaysian unit had also admitted to conspiring to violate the FCPA in connection with a scheme between approximately 2009 and 2014 to pay over US$1.6 billion in bribes to Malaysian and Abu Dhabi officials to obtain lucrative business for the bank, including its role in underwriting approximately US$6.5 billion in three bond deals for 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) for which the bank earned hundreds of millions in fees.

The 1MDB state investment firm was the brainchild of Datuk Seri Najib Razak during his tenure as the prime minister.

Following the agreement, Goldman Sachs chief executive and chairman David M. Solomon had said the firm was pleased to be putting these matters behind to resolve the government and regulatory investigations into the 1MDB matter.

Malaysian prosecutors initially filed charges in December 2018 against three Goldman Sachs units for misleading investors over bond sales totalling US$6.5 billion that the bank helped raise for 1MDB but agreed to withdraw criminal proceedings in September 2020 after the firm agreed to pay US$2.5 billion and guaranteed the recovery of $1.4 billion in assets allegedly stolen from the fund to Malaysia to settle the probe.

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