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Mahathir's sons' companies raided by tax authorities

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's Inland Revenue Board (IRB) has targeted companies owned by the three sons of former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad, with tax officials visiting their offices on Tuesday and taking away some files.

Officials at the companies confirmed the raids to liberal news portal Malaysiakini.

The raids were also reported on by other online media outlets.

Kencana Capital, a venture capital firm owned by millionaire businessman Mokhzani Mahathir was raided on Tuesday, as was Crescent Capital, a venture firm headed by Mr Mirzan Mahathir.

Optics company Opcom Holdings, founded by politician Mukhriz Mahathir, was also visited by the IRB, who took some files away.

The raids followed the recent emergence of Dr Mahathir as leader of the opposition Pakatan Harapan alliance, with the general election slated to be held within a year.

Dr Mahathir, who was prime minister for 22 years until 2003, is under probe by a Royal Commission of Inquiry over multi-billion ringgit losses incurred by the central bank through foreign exchange trading in the early 1990s.

A senior executive at Crescent Capital confirmed the IRB raid to Malaysiakini yesterday. "We were raided by eight to 10 IRB officers and some files were taken away," he said.

Opcom also confirmed that it was raided on Tuesday but a spokesman declined to provide details.

Dr Mahathir had complained in the media in May that the taxman had been harassing businessmen who were close to him after he joined the opposition.

His daughter, social activist Marina Mahathir, confirmed the raids to Free Malaysia Today, saying in a text message: "I don't think it's a coincidence. Or that they (IRB) are just doing their job." - THE STRAITS TIMES

malaysiaMahathir Mohamadcorruption