Riza Aziz, one of the producers of “The Wolf of Wall Street” movie and stepson to Malaysia’s former leader Najib Razak, reached a settlement on Malaysia charges linked to 1MDB.
He was discharged not amounting to acquittal on Thursday after reaching an agreement with the government, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib. That means the government will get “a substantial sum running into several million ringgit,” according to a statement read out by the prosecution team.
“If there is satisfactory completion of the agreement then appropriate steps will be taken to ensure that the accused obtains a full acquittal,” the team said in the statement. Otherwise, prosecutors have the right to reinstate the charges.
Riza faced five counts of money laundering for allegedly receiving $248.2 million of funds that prosecutors said were stolen from 1MDB, which has been at the center of global corruption investigations. He’s a co-founder of Red Granite Pictures Inc. that previously reached a $60 million settlement with the U.S. Justice Department over claims that it financed the movie using money siphoned from the troubled state fund.
His stepfather Najib was ousted from power in 2018 and subsequently charged for his alleged role in 1MDB as the then-Malaysian government stepped up investigations into the scandal. Since then, the country saw a political turmoil bring Najib’s party back into power, leading to concerns over the ongoing probes and legal proceedings related to 1MDB.
Current Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin has pledged to keep fighting corruption and working with jurisdictions across the world to bring back funds linked to the state fund.