Forget Santa. There’s another portly figure of fun decorating homes in Malaysia this Christmas. A local Malaysian brand has released a range of novelty items featuring the infamous Jho Low as its unlikely centrepiece.
Adorned with cheeky phrases like “Spending like I stole it”, “Wishing You A Billion Dollar Christmas” and “Lari, Party, Jholly, Repeat”, A Piece of Malaysia (or APOM’s) items highlight how the nation’s populace is developing a wry humor towards Low and his alleged crimes.
The co-founder of APOM, Kelvin Long, told CNN that while many Malaysians ultimately want to see Low face justice, they are prepared to embrace the lighter side in the meantime. “We want to bring (Low) back (to Malaysia),” Long said.
“(We’re) trying to create a bit more humour into the situation. There are a lot of mad people…let’s make a mockery out of it,” he says before adding that the products were outselling all of the other Christmas items in his shop.
It’s no secret that Low is alleged to have used ill-gotten gains to fund a lavish lifestyle involving luxury real estate, private planes, a US$250 million yacht, and parties with celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio, Paris Hilton and Miranda Kerr, on whom he lavished millions of dollars worth of jewellery – since surrendered to the US Department of Justice.
Low, whose full name is Low Taek Jho, is accused of using shell companies to funnel assets out of 1MDB for his own personal enrichment. He allegedly embarked on an almost decade-long splurge involving the purchase of more than a billion dollars’ worth of luxury items, according to US Justice Department filings. Low is still on the run and his whereabouts remain unknown, though he maintains his innocence.
Source: Euan McKirdy/CNN International