20 April 2018
Bruno-Manser-Fonds, a Swiss non-profit organisation sued Royal Bank of Canada, Toronto-Dominion Bank, Manulife Financial Corp. and Deloitte & Touche for information about the flow of money into a Canadian real estate company, Sakto. Bruno-Manser-Fonds is seeking the information to gauge whether there are grounds for a criminal case against the real estate group.
Ottawa-based real estate company Sakto Group has a real estate empire estimated at $204 million. Bruno-Manser-Fonds alleges that the real estate company received $24 million from Sarawak Governor Abdul Mahmud Taib’s family for its expansion. The lawsuit was unsealed this week by an Ontario judge, Justice Frederick Myers. He ordered that the documents be made public.
Sakto is run by Sean Murray and his wife, Jamilah Taib Murray. Jamilah is Taib’s daughter. She is believed to be the richest women in Canada. In 2006, Sakto Group added the California-based Sakti International Corporation and the Washington-based Wallysons Inc. to its property empire. These properties were managed by Ross Boyert, a US national. He was sacked by Sakto last year and died under worrying circumstances. In 2010, Boyert was found dead in a Los Angeles hotel with a plastic bag tied around his head. Before his death, Boyert handed several sensitive documents to the website Sarawak Report. The documents showed that Abdul Taib Mahmud was the ultimate beneficial owner of Sakti International and that Taib’s relatives were holding most shares on behalf of the corrupt politician himself. Research by the Bruno Manser Fund shows that Taib’s siblings, children and his first cousin have a stake in over 400 companies in 25 countries. The family’s stake in 14 Malaysian companies alone is above 1.46 billion US dollars. The Edge Markets reported.
Taib was Chief Minister of Sarawak from 1981 to 2014. He was the longest serving Chief Minister in Malaysia. He took office of the Yang di-Pertua Negeri of Sarawak in 2014. Yang di-Pertua Negeri is the ceremonial head of the state.