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Pro-Najib website targets Pua over WSJ leak
Published:  Sep 9, 2015 4:45 PM
Updated: 9:23 AM

A website aligned to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has questioned if Tony Pua is responsible for the leak of information pertaining to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) probe on 1MDB to the Wall Street Journal ( WSJ ).

The DAP lawmaker is a vociferous critic of the state-owned firm and a member of the PAC.

"This means PAC members themselves are not trustworthy and working with WSJ to sabotage 1MDB which is in the process of restructuring its debts and business.

"How can PAC be an independent committee if its members do not follow existing rules and sell internal information?" questioned .

Following this, the website zeroed in on Pua as the possible culprit.

Earlier today, 1MDB accused WSJ of breaching Malaysian law after the US publication reported claims that US$1.4 billion paid by the Malaysian state-owned fund to Abu Dhabi-based International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) had gone missing.

1MDB had accused WSJ of using confidential information belonging to the PAC.

In its report, WSJ revealed it had obtained information belonging to a "parliamentary committee probing 1MDB".

Meanwhile, 1MDB also expressed concern that those involved in the PAC hearing might have leaked the information and called for action to be taken.

Pua had also landed in the spotlight when he was accused of being part of a plot to topple the prime minister using stolen documents provided by PetroSaudi International’s former employee Xavier Andre Justo.

The government-linked New Straits Times ( NST ) claimed Pua admitted to being the person who introduced Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown to The Edge Media Group's top guns.

NST also reported that Pua claimed he was not privy to the leaks or any transactions.

Rewcastle-Brown and The Edge , whose two publications have since been suspended, had among others been accused of tampering with the documents obtained from Justo, which they denied.

"Pua refused to commit when NST asked him on WhatsApp if it made sense for a person, acting as the go-between for the sale of US$2 million (RM8.6 million) worth of supposedly valuable commodity, not to have knowledge of what was being put up for sale, its authenticity or even where it came from.

"He was also asked if he was aware that he was aiding and abetting in the sale of stolen data. To this, he asked if the NST was levelling accusations against him," read the report.

NST also claimed Pua's name was mentioned several times in Justo's written confession and transcript of three-month long WhatsApp conversations involving Rewcastle-Brown, Justo, and The Edge 's top bosses Tong Kooi Ong and Ho Kay Tat.

"In another WhatsApp thread between Justo and Rewcastle-Brown (they were using the pseudonyms Fullerton and Athene Ban) to discuss the stalled promised payment to Justo, Rewcastle-Brown told him, 'I have asked Tony to set up a meeting with Tong.'

"Justo, in his response, asked Rewcastle-Brown to take it from there, saying: 'You decide. I thought Tony was the leverage. If they don't care about Tony, what can the others do.'

"Rewcastle-Brown responded: 'Ok. Waiting for Tony to expand on this. He introduced me and has involvement. None of the parties want this out, I assume.'

"In the exchanges, in which Justo's patience appeared to be wearing thin, Rewcastle-Brown had also allegedly told him: 'I have told Tony that if he doesn't pay up then he will be seen to have been dealing with me as you (Justo) are threatening to publish (make public the deal).'"

Justo was detained by Thai police and charged with extorting his former employer.

Meanwhile, NST also noted how Pua was called to Bukit Aman on Sept 4 over his statements in relation to 1MDB.

"He then held court outside Bukit Aman, telling the media that police asked him if he knew Rewcastle-Brown and Justo. He said: 'I told police I know Clare and met her in London previously."

"However, I do not know Justo and have never met him," the report quoted him as saying.

Malaysiakini could not reach Pua for comment.