Monday, May 30, 2011

Who was the third man that accompanied Abdul Razak Baginda and Altantuya Shariibuu?

There was a third person accompanying political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda and murdered Mongolian interpreter Altantuya Shariibuu on their travels in connection with the purchase of three French submarines by the Malaysian government.

Human rights NGO Suaram director Cynthia Gabriel told Malaysiakinitoday that the identity of the third person involved in the travels is being verified by French investigators.

suaram french submarine case 280410 cynthia gabrielAlthough 'a name' had come up during the probe, she said, it was too early to reveal the identity of the individual.

"Our lawyers have informed us that a third person's name came up during the investigations... the probe is going on, but it is still too early to determine who the person is," Gabriel (right) said.

It had been earlier been revealed that a company named Gifen, established in Malta by Jean-Marie Boivin, had intervened in negotiations for the purchase of the submarines to facilitate monetary transfers to finance Abdul Razak and Altantuya's travels.

The negotiations involved the sale of an Agosta and two Scorpene submarines to the Malaysian government under a RM4.3 billion (1 billion euro) contract inked in 2002 between Malaysia and DCNS, formerly known as DCN, a shipyard builder allied with Spanish warship builder Thalès.

It is uncertain whether this 'mysterious' personality could be the missing link in the murder of Altantuya, which has dogged Prime Minister Najib Razak since 2006. Gabriel declined to discuss this matter further.

Blown up with C4 explosives

In 2006, Altantuya, a translator and intermediary for the French submarines deal who was believed to be romantically linked with Razak, a close friend and adviser to Najib, was killed with C4 explosives at a jungle clearing in Shah Alam, Selangor.

Najib was then deputy prime minister and defence minister, while the two special task force officers convicted of murdering Altantuya were Najib's bodyguards.

Gabriel had revealed last month that there was not just one commission paid out but two others as well: a RM129 million (30 million euro) payment by DCNS to the commercial networks of Thalès as "commercial fees linked to the negotiations and the enactment of the contract" and another payment of RM10.8 million (2.5 million euro).

She said the second commission had reportedly been paid by Thalès to an intermediary, still unidentified, in order to convince the Malaysian government that it was necessary to have some more works initiated.

altantuya and son 050309Although Suaram was yet to find out who this 'unidentified' intermediary was, Gabriel said Gifen had reportedly intervened in the negotiations to facilitate monetary transfers to finance the travels of Razak and Altantuya (right, pictured with her son).

Gabriel also said today that Suaram was planning massive fund-raising dinners in Penang and in Kuala Lumpur to support its legal fund.

The events would be held in July and the dates are yet to be confirmed.

She said the dinners would also serve as a platform for Suaram to reveal and explain the findings behind the December suit it filed in a Paris court against against French submarine maker DCNS for "active and passive corruption, trading of favours and abuse of corporate assets".

"The French lawyers who took up the case in Paris will be here to explain in detail and update the public on the findings and information we have got so far," she said.

"We would like members of the public to be aware of what is happening in the case, and that we must continue discussions and question the authorities on suspected corruption surrounding the matter," she added.

Initially, it was suspected that a bribe of RM492 million (114 million euro) had been paid by Amaris, a subsidiary of DCNS and Thalès, to "unidentified Malaysian officials" through a company called Perimekar.

The majority shareholder of Perimekar, officially created to "coordinate" the sale of submarines, is alleged to be Razak's wife.

The agreement to purchase two Scorpene submarines worth billions of dollars was signed when Najib became defence minister in 2002.

[Source: Mkini]

The Third Man Theme

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