1MDB whistleblower talks of ‘paying the price’ for doing the right thing


The experience of Xavier Andre Justo—the former Swiss banker turned whistleblower in one of the most notorious financial scandals of the past decade—shows that those who speak up about bribery and corruption are often the only victims of the supposed “victimless crimes” they report.

Justo had been one of the directors of oil company PetroSaudi’s London office. In 2009, the company engaged in a multi-billion-dollar joint venture with Malaysia’s newly set up sovereign wealth fund, 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), whose aim was to fund infrastructure projects to drive the country’s economic growth.

Following a dispute with PetroSaudi’s co-founder Tarek Obaid, Justo left the company in 2011—taking with him to his home in Thailand a server full of emails and other sensitive financial documents as an “insurance policy.”

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