Rosmah dwarfs Imelda in the kleptocracy department

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Malaysian police have seized 284 boxes of designer handbags and 72 bags of cash, jewelry and watches after raiding Kuala Lumpur properties linked to Najib Razak, the former prime minister who was ousted in a shock election result last week, and his wife Rosmah Mansor.

The police began searches on May 16 in the night at Razak’s and his family’s luxury apartments and they were still ongoing on May 18 in the morning. The raid produced the biggest haul yet, filling five police trucks. The value of the goods has not yet been calculated, but Rosmah Mansor’s own stockpile of bags alone is reportedly worth millions. One Birkin crocodile skin handbag sells for up to $300,000.

The amount of luxury goods seized put in the shade the collection of Imalda Marcos, wife of late Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who was found to possess around 3,000 pairs of designer shoes – among jewelry, gold and cash – when the pair was ousted in 1986.

The raid is part of a police investigation into Najib’s role in the scandal around state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), in which billions of dollars went missing and were embezzled around the world, funding yachts, Picasso paintings and Hollywood films. Some $681 million of the fund were alleged to have been transferred directly into Najib’s personal bank account, and the 1MDB money also allegedly funded a 22-carat pink diamond necklace, worth $27.3 million, for Rosmah.

The annual salary of the prime minister is only $70,000, which is not enough for even one Birkin handbag. It is also a stark contrast to the frugal lifestyle of the newly elected prime minister, 92-year-old Mahathir Mohamad, who was recently spotted going about his official duties in sandals costing $4.

Meanwhile, Malaysia’s released former opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim said he expected Najib to be jailed over the graft claims.

“I think Najib must pay for what he’s done,” Anwar told SBS News.

“Nobody in their right mind would fail to realise the effect that Najib through 1MDB and all the major concessions and continuous spending has drained the resources of the country,” he stated.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Malaysian police have seized 284 boxes of designer handbags and 72 bags of cash, jewelry and watches after raiding Kuala Lumpur properties linked to Najib Razak, the former prime minister who was ousted in a shock election result last week, and his wife Rosmah Mansor.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Malaysian police have seized 284 boxes of designer handbags and 72 bags of cash, jewelry and watches after raiding Kuala Lumpur properties linked to Najib Razak, the former prime minister who was ousted in a shock election result last week, and his wife Rosmah Mansor.

The police began searches on May 16 in the night at Razak’s and his family’s luxury apartments and they were still ongoing on May 18 in the morning. The raid produced the biggest haul yet, filling five police trucks. The value of the goods has not yet been calculated, but Rosmah Mansor’s own stockpile of bags alone is reportedly worth millions. One Birkin crocodile skin handbag sells for up to $300,000.

The amount of luxury goods seized put in the shade the collection of Imalda Marcos, wife of late Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who was found to possess around 3,000 pairs of designer shoes – among jewelry, gold and cash – when the pair was ousted in 1986.

The raid is part of a police investigation into Najib’s role in the scandal around state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), in which billions of dollars went missing and were embezzled around the world, funding yachts, Picasso paintings and Hollywood films. Some $681 million of the fund were alleged to have been transferred directly into Najib’s personal bank account, and the 1MDB money also allegedly funded a 22-carat pink diamond necklace, worth $27.3 million, for Rosmah.

The annual salary of the prime minister is only $70,000, which is not enough for even one Birkin handbag. It is also a stark contrast to the frugal lifestyle of the newly elected prime minister, 92-year-old Mahathir Mohamad, who was recently spotted going about his official duties in sandals costing $4.

Meanwhile, Malaysia’s released former opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim said he expected Najib to be jailed over the graft claims.

“I think Najib must pay for what he’s done,” Anwar told SBS News.

“Nobody in their right mind would fail to realise the effect that Najib through 1MDB and all the major concessions and continuous spending has drained the resources of the country,” he stated.

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