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MACC still investigating Vinod Sekhar

Several more people are expected to be called in for questioning.

Azzman Abdul Jamal
2 minute read
Businessman Vinod Sekhar. Photo: Facebook
Businessman Vinod Sekhar. Photo: Facebook

The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is still investigating the case involving businessman Vinod Sekhar and will call several more individuals for questioning depending on the needs of the probe, anti-graft chief Azam Baki said today.

However, he said he could not share details of developments as the case is still under investigation.

“The case is still being investigated, so I cannot reveal anything,” he said in a press conference at the MACC headquarters in Putrajaya.

“Those who are called will depend on the witnesses we spoke to before this.”

MalaysiaNow reported in November that MACC had raided offices linked to Vinod, in what was believed to be the start of one of the biggest money laundering cases since the 1MDB investigations three years ago.

The investigation involved officers from the National Financial Crime Centre and MACC, as well as from Bank Negara Malaysia and the Inland Revenue Board.

Petra Group, which operates a chain of companies and organisations, is headed by Vinod, a businessman who is a strong supporter of PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim.

A source close to the investigations told MalaysiaNow that the raid in Bangsar followed months of investigations into alleged money laundering and tax evasion involving hundreds of millions of ringgit.

It said officers had seized “some documents and items” as part of the probe.

In June, meanwhile, MalaysiaNow reported that Vinod through GR Technologies, a company with an address in Bangsar, had secured the lion’s share of billions of dollars worth of contracts to supply ventilators to the Hungarian government.

Hungary’s purchase of ventilators from various suppliers kicked up a storm last year at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic in Europe, with opposition politicians there calling out the deals for being opaque as well as resulting in an oversupply.

They also said the ventilators bought by Hungary were overpriced, and questioned why the purchases were made through the foreign affairs ministry.

Vinod confirmed getting the contract but insisted that “everything was above board”, adding that he had received a “normal percentage” in commission.

Documents obtained by MalaysiaNow from Hungary showed Budapest agreeing to pay Vinod a total of US$559,600,000, which at the time of the contract in May 2020 converted to about RM2.43 billion, through several bank accounts.