WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Justice Department is set to announce multiple criminal charges on Thursday against two former Goldman Sachs Inc <GS.N> bankers and Malaysian financier Jho Low tied to the Malaysia 1MDB sovereign wealth fund scandal, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Citing sources familiar with the case, the Wall Street Journal said Tim Leissner, former partner for Goldman Sachs in Asia, is expected to plead guilty to conspiracy to launder money and conspiracy to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and will forfeit $43.7 million (33.8 million pounds). Roger Ng, the other former Goldman banker, was arrested in Malaysia and Jho Low, last seen in China, will be indicted.gi
Goldman, which generated about $600 million in fees for its work with 1MDB, has in the past repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and said it is fully cooperating with authorities.
Reuters could not immediately confirm the report.
An estimated $4.5 billion was misappropriated from 1Malaysia Development Berhad, or 1MDB, by high-level officials of the fund and their associates, the U.S. Justice Department has alleged.
While U.S. prosecutors have previously filed civil asset forfeiture suits for assets allegedly bought with some of the stolen funds, these are the first criminal charges the Justice Department has brought against individuals in the case, the Wall Street Journal reported.
(Reporting by Lisa Lambert; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Nick Zieminski)