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Malaysia fines Najib's brother, others for receiving 1MDB funds

Malaysia has fined the brother of former prime minister Najib Razak and other people and companies for allegedly receiving money from state fund 1MDB, the country's anti-graft chief said on Monday.

Malaysian and US investigators say about US$4.5 billion was misappropriated from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), set up in 2009 by Najib.

Najib, who lost a general election last year, is now facing dozens of graft and money laundering charges over allegations that he received about US$1 billion in 1MDB funds. He has pleaded not guilty.

Latheefa Koya, the head of Malaysia's Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), told reporters the agency was aiming to recover RM420 million (US$100 million) from individuals and entities who had allegedly received funds laundered through accounts linked to Najib.

"We have issued compound notices against all of these people and entities for the purpose of them to pay up the fine," Latheefa said, adding that they could be fined up to 2.5 times the amount received.

The individuals include Najib's brother Nazir Razak, the former chairman of Malaysia's second-largest bank, CIMB, and Shahrir Abdul Samad, former chairman of state palm oil agency Felda.

Funds were also distributed to companies, political parties and organisations linked to Najib's coalition, a list provided by the MACC showed.

After winning last year's election, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad's administration has reopened 1MDB probes, charged dozens of high-ranked officials, and filed civil forfeiture actions in a bid to recover money linked to 1MDB.