Malaysian billionaire Jho Low is currently wanted by international law enforcement authorities for his part in an alleged money laundering scheme involving Malaysia’s sovereign wealth fund. In the scheme, Jho and associates allegedly stole $4.5 billion from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad, in what has become known as the 1MDB scandal. As it turns out, the billionaire’s adventures go back a good deal further than that and involved some of the world’s most famous celebrities.
Thanks to newly-revealed FBI interview transcripts related to the government’s investigation into Low’s activities, we’ve learned of a particularly incredible story involving none other than Kim Kardashian and hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of cash, a trash bag and a Southwest flight back to LA.
Kim Kardashian was interviewed by the FBI in 2019. In the interview Kim described how she met Jho Low at a nightclub in Las Vegas in 2009. They exchanged info, and he invited her to join him and his 12-person entourage for dinner.
After dinner, the group headed for the baccarat tables in a private room. Jho spotted Kim a huge stack of chips, apparently so she could play along. Kardashian claimed she had no idea the total value of the chips.
Kim stuck around until the wee morning hours, gambling a little but mostly watching other people play. At 5am Kim motioned she wanted to go back to her room to sleep. Before she could sneak out, someone in the group advised her to stick around. Why? Because Jho was known for gifting people huge wads of cash after a long night of partying but only at the very end of his gambling streak.
So she ordered a cup of coffee and got comfortable in her seat.
When Jho finally stopped gambling several hours later, Kim tried to push all those chips back. He told her to keep them.
Kim did not find out the value of those chips until she want to the cashier to cash-out. The cashier calmly reported that Kim was about to cash-out…
For whatever reason, maybe there was a daily limit or maybe there was a cash shortage at the casino, but Kim was “only” given $250,000 cash. What was she given to contain and transport a quarter-million worth of cash?
A plastic trash bag
And what did Kim do with $250,000 cash in trash bag? According to her FBI interview, Kim “put the trash bag full of cash in her carry-on bag and boarded a Southwest Airlines flight back to Los Angeles.” Obviously! What else would one do?
To retrieve the remaining $100k Kim scheduled another Vegas trip and did it all over again, using the same system.
And what did Kim do with the money? According to her interview, Kim splurged most of the cash on a single purchase…
That Ferrari was later sold in order to purchase a Lamborghini in the name of Kim’s then-husband Kris Humphries. Jho Low was actually in attendance when Kim married Kris in 2011. The FBI report also states that Low chipped in $100,000 worth of fireworks for their wedding plus ANOTHER $305,000 in cash as a general present.
Karshashian’s next and apparently final encounter with Low came in 2014, when the mysterious billionaire (whose source of wealth Kardashian described as a mystery), offered to make a gift of an original painting by Jean-Michel Basquiat to her and then-husband Kanye West. What a nice gesture!
And how did Kim and Kanye respond to that gesture?
They responded by asking for a piece by Claude Monet instead.
Before you accuse Kim and Kanye being spoiled brats, the counter-request was a ruse intended to “mess with Low because both Kardashian and West found Low to be very fickle when giving gifts and never expected to actually receive a painting.”
Unclear if Kim was forced to pay any of the money she received from Low back to Malaysia.