Leonardo DiCaprio has been challenged to debate Malaysian corruption in London on the occasion of the European launch of the documentary Before the Flood directed by Fisher Stevens. In a letter to the actor, the Swiss rainforest charity, The Bruno Manser Fund, invites DiCaprio to a public debate on the recovery of stolen Malaysian state assets to be held at London’s Free Word Centre on Friday 14 October.
The debate will be attended by civil society representatives from Malaysia, the UK and Switzerland and will aim at devising a strategy to recover billions of dollars in state assets stolen and laundered by Malaysian public officials and their associates.
Malaysian grand corruption is a major international concern and includes the cases of the Governor of the state of Sarawak, Abdul Taib Mahmud, whose wealth made from illegal logging has been estimated at up to USD 15 billion, the case of Musa Aman, Chief Minister of Sabah, who has accepted at least USD 90million in bribes from timber tycoons, and the case of Prime Minister Najib Razak and his associates who have embezzled over USD3.5 billion from Malaysian sovereign fund 1MDB.
„Leonardo DiCaprio needs to understand that we can’t save the environment if we fail to stop corruption“, said Lukas Straumann, the executive director of the Bruno Manser Fund. „And he has to come clean on his ties to Riza Aziz and Low Taek Jho, two key figures of Malaysia’s 1MDB corruption scandal.“
Last July, DiCaprio was named (“Hollywood Actor 1“) in a civil forfeiture suit filed in Los Angeles by the US Department of Justice over financial links of his film The Wolf of Wall Street to embezzled Malaysian state funds.
Source: Bruno Manser Fund