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Malaysia in transition

Ex-US government worker admits to helping 1MDB scheme's architect

Justice Department employee conspired to deceive banks about foreign funds

The transferred money was used in a lobbying campaign to resolve cases related to the Justice Department's investigation into the scheme to embezzle billions of dollars from Malaysia's 1MDB state fund.   © Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- A former U.S. Justice Department employee pleaded guilty on Friday to conspiring to deceive banks about millions of dollars in foreign lobbying funds, after he facilitated the financing of a lobbying campaign related to the U.S. investigation into the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal.

The Justice Department said in a statement that the alleged architect of the 1MDB scheme had hired George Higginbotham, who was then a senior congressional affairs specialist at the Justice Department, to help transfer tens of millions of dollars from foreign bank accounts to the United States.

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