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Billion Dollar Whale: Details of the world’s greatest financial scandal

One of the world’s greatest scandals comes out of Malaysia, and it involves a plot that fooled Wall Street, Hollywood and the world.

Former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak, along with associates and members of his family, is facing charges for the theft of more than US$1 billion from a Malaysian wealth fund.

But the person at the centre of the story is Jho Low, a Malaysian financier and fugitive.

He’s also the subject of a new book, Billion Dollar Whale: The Man Who Fooled Wall Street, Hollywood, and the World, written by Tom Wright and Bradley Hope and details the incredible financial scandal.

Speaking with Ross Greenwood, Tom says Low is one of the “most amazing con artists the world has ever seen”.

“Age 27, he convinced the Prime Minister of Malaysian to set up a sovereign wealth fund, and let him run it from behind the scenes.

“This is an incredible situation.”

Tom says “this guy was the biggest that whale anyone had ever encountered”, ‘whale’ being a term used to describe a big spender in a nightclub or a casino.

But the scandal doesn’t end there.

Low also establish Red Granite Pictures, a film production company financed by the Malaysian funds.

The company then went on used $400 million of the stolen money to finance none other than The Wolf of Wall Street, a film detailing corruption.

Remarkably, at the announcement party in America, the Jordan Belfort, who the film is based on, called the whole thing a scam.

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