KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will need to establish if the private jet owned by controversial businessman, Low Taek Jho or Jho Low, was bought using 1Malaysia Development Berhad's (1MDB) money.
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the same method used to bring back another of Jho Low's property, super yacht Equinimity, will be utilised to secure the aircraft.
"(First) We will need to establish, that the money used to buy the private jet, is from stolen (1MDB) money. If the money is stolen from Malaysia, that means the jet belongs to us," he said when asked on the jet's status, currently held by the Singaporean authority.
Speaking to reporters, after the launch of the new Cardiac Vascular Sentral Kuala Lumpur private hospital here, Dr Mahathir said, “It is the same as the yacht... we will try to get the jet back from Singapore."
The RM1 billion Equanimity is cuirrently being held at the Boustead cruise centre in Port Klang.
It was reported last year that Singapore had seized a US$35 million private jet belonging to Jho Low. The Bombardier Global 5000 jet was impounded by authorities and grounded at Singapore’s Seletar Airport.
On Tuesday, Dr Mahathir said the private jet had not been flown for quite awhile and it had to undergo maintenance before it could be flown here.
He was also quoted as saying that he believed the private jet was likely to be purchased using 1MDB money.
The aircraft is believed to be part of some US$1 billion in assets allegedly acquired with funds siphoned from 1MDB that the US government is moving to seize. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd