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French courts asked to probe submarine deal

A potentially explosive scandal in Malaysia over the billion-dollar purchase of French submarines, a deal engineered by then-defence minister Najib Razak, has broken out of the domestic arena with the filing of a request to investigate bribery and kickbacks from the deal in a Paris court.

Although the case has been contained for eight years in the cozy confines of Malaysia's courts and parliament, which are dominated by the ruling BN, French lawyers William Bourdon, Renaud Semerdjian and Joseph Breham put an end to that when they filed it with Parisian prosecutors on behalf of the Malaysian human rights organisation Suaram, which supports good-government causes.

Judges in the Paris Prosecution Office have been probing a wide range of corruption charges involving similar submarine sales and the possibility of bribery and kickbacks to top officials in France, Pakistan and other countries...

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