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☕️ RM38 mil cash, 200 kg gold, 17 luxury cars seized from a 'Datuk' film distributor by MACC

MY ranked 3rd amongst 48 countries where you are most likely to die on the road. Luxury group LVMH sponsors EUR150 mil to Paris Olympics 2024. Another 0.25% rate hike by the US Federal Reserve's FOMC.


The US Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee raised its funds rate by 0.25 percentage point to a target range of 5.25%-5.5%, marking the highest level for the benchmark rate since early 2001. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell acknowledged that inflation has moderated somewhat since the middle of last year, but he emphasised that achieving the Fed's 2% target still has a long way to go.


Younger workers often get called out for wanting to work remotely. A survey of 13,000 office workers by McKinsey Global Institute found that remote working is less of a generational preference and is driven by income level and seniority. The survey found 1/3 of employees who earn over USD150,000 strongly preferred working from home (WFH), and only 9% of employees earning less than USD50,000 felt the same way. 44% of senior workers said they would rather WFH than 6% of junior employees. These workers were also willing to take a 20% pay cut to work the desired amount of days from home. Read report: How hybrid work has changed the way people work, live, and shop.

The cheapest 7-inch pizza in the world can be purchased for 49 rupees (RM2.73) in India. This stripped-down pizza is offered by Domino’s to help ease rampant inflation in India. For comparison, Domino’s cheapest pizza in San Francisco costs about RM54.63. India is Domino’s biggest market outside of the US, with 1,816 outlets and achieving sales of USD635 mil (RM2.9 bi) last year. As for Pizza Hut, it has over 2,000 outlets in India.

According to a study by car subscription company Finn, Malaysia ranked 3rd where you are most likely to die on the road (22.48 road deaths per 100,000 people) and 5th with the most dangerous roads in a list of 48 countries it analysed. Again, Malaysia ranked amongst the top for the wrong reasons. Do the Works Ministry and Transport Ministry have their data to refute these findings?Read study: The World’s Safest Roads.


Treasure trove worth >RM100 mil seized from a ‘Datuk’ film distributorMACC commissioner Azam Baki confirmed a Multi-Agency Task Force (MATF) operation dubbed Ops 82s managed to crush a syndicate that practised bribery, breach of trust, illegal smuggling of goods, and illegal tax reduction. In the multi-agency raid that MACC led, more than RM38 mil in cash, over 200kg of gold worth north of RM60 mil and 17 luxury cars were seized from a Datuk film distributor who was arrested earlier this week for alleged money laundering.

It was also reported that MACC would call up an unnamed former cabinet minister to facilitate investigations into the matter. Based on the reaction to the raid, we can take our guesses. Former Human Resources Minister and Tapah MP M. Saravanan remained unfazed by talks on the possibility that the MACC would call him in to help in its investigation. Saravanan is believed to be linked to one of the individuals nabbed during the raid.

Updates from the court

  • The High Court has set September 21 as the date to decide whether to proceed or not on the judicial review of a 26-year-old Malaysian woman who wants to revert back to Christianity. The lady initially converted to Islam in 2017 to marry her then-boyfriend, who was a Muslim. However, the relationship collapsed and the lady decided to become a Christian again in 2022. She stated that she became a Muslim back then just for administrative purposes and did not practise the Islamic way of living.

  • Najib Razak’s 1MDB corruption trial, the presiding judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah revealed that the possible witness to the trial, Jasmine Loo Ai Swan was his partner in a law firm when he was a practising lawyer 10 to 15 years ago. Jasmine was a former 1MDB general counsel that was recently arrested. In 2018, Loo was listed as a wanted person by the Government and was charged in absentia with two counts of laundering more than USD6 mil from a Swiss account that she controlled between 2012 and 2014. A wise disclosure or his reputation could end up being tarnished like the judge who convicted Najib Razak in the SRC International case. 

Spotlight on Selangor 

  • In a Perikatan Nasional (PN) event in Taman Medan, PN chairman Muhyiddin Yassin announced the full lineup of candidates for the crown jewel state of Selangor. As of now, former UMNO member Khairy Jamaluddin will not be contesting under PN in Selangor, while one of Sheraton Move masterminds — Azmin Ali — will be competing for the Hulu Kelang state seat. See the PN’s list of Selangor candidates here. 

  • Local Government Minister Nga Kor Ming stated that Putrajaya had approved the plan to upgrade Klang from a municipal council to a city council. Nga said that the 133-year-old Klang meets all the criteria to become a city. Once obtaining consent from the Sultan of Selangor, Klang will be the fourth city in Selangor after Petaling Jaya, Subang Jaya and Shah Alam.

  • Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd (ERL) announced that its KLIA Ekspres service that runs uninterrupted trips between KL Sentral and KLIA Terminal 1 & 2 will run every 20 minutes every day, even during national holidays.


  1. Malaysia-based renewable energy company reNIKOLA Holdings Sdn Bhd is planning to raise up to RM2 bil to fund its project over the next three years. Among the company’s fundraising activities are to issue an RM1.78 bil certified Islamic climate bond in August 2023 and to complete the reverse takeover of Bursa-listed shell company Pimpinan Ehsan Bhd by Q1 2024.

  2. Bousted Group’s pharmaceutical arm, Pharmaniga Bhd, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with CSPC Pharmaceutical Group Ltd (CSPC) to enhance the latter’s biopharmaceutical portfolio, which includes CSPC’s highly potential mRNA technology platform.


Cambodia's leader to step down with son named heir, while India's Modi faces no-confidence vote

  • Prime Minister Hun Sen, 70, of the Cambodian People’s Party declared he will step down in three weeks after 38 years in power (making him the longest-serving Asian leader), handing the position to his oldest son Hun Manet, currently chief of the Cambodian army, who won his first seat in parliament in the elections over the weekend. Said elections also came under fire from Western countries and rights organisations calling them “neither free nor fair” due to the suppression of the Candlelight Party, the country’s main opposition. The suppression included “a pattern of threats and harassment against the political opposition, media, and civil society”, according to the US, and the exclusion of the Candlelight Party due to detained figures, according to the EU.

  • Meanwhile, India’s parliament has authorised a vote of no confidence against the administration of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a bid by an alliance of opposition parties to force Modi to address ethnic clashes in the state of Manipur. The opposition alliance wants to trigger a debate about the violence in Manipur where more than 130 have been killed and over 60,000 displaced since clashes began in early May between the Kuki-Zo and Meitei tribes. Modi had not commented in public on the violence until the incident about two women being paraded naked and assaulted by a mob in Manipur, and only to promise “tough action against the perpetrators”.

ChatGPT creator warns that "some jobs will definitely go away" as generative AI technology risesWhile OpenAI CEO Sam Altman agreed that generative AI such as ChatGPT can help boost productivity, he also pushed back against the notion that AI is only going to be good for workers, as espoused by some advocates. Altman stated that there will be jobs that are “definitely going away”.

Altman also recently launched the Worldcoin cryptocurrency project, which gives people digital coins if they provide a scan of their irises to prove they are human. Altman hopes the initiative will help confirm if someone is a human or a robot and that it could be the basis of an “AI-funded universal basic income”. However, the initiative has been criticised as dystopian, while the use of the company’s specialised iris-scanner Orbs could give Worldcoin too much power. Each person will get 25 free tokens upon completion of scanning, now valued at USD2.29 per coin (live prices here). So one will get about USD57 by giving up their biometric data. 

LVMH becomes Paris Olympics 2024 sponsorIn a first for luxury conglomerate LVMH, the luxury group will be a sponsor of the upcoming Summer Olympics in Paris. LVMH will be putting EUR150 million (RM755.9 mil) into the Olympic and Paralympic games, the biggest sponsorship commitment of any company, according to sources. Additionally, the group’s jewellery brand Chaumet will design the medals, while hospitality guests will be served wines and spirits produced by Moet Hennessy. The sponsorship places LVMH on a list of premium partners that include names like grocer Carrefour SA and Air France-KLM.

On another note, LVMH just reported a 15% rise in its H1 2023 revenue to EUR42.4 bil and profit rising by 13% to EUR11.6 bil, experiencing growth in all categories except its wines and spirits arm.


  1. Porsche’s iconic 911 to be the only internal combustion engine (ICE) model - The automaker plans to convert its lineup into electric vehicles by 2030 and has been at the forefront of the push for the EU to allow the sales of electric vehicles, with its interest in e-fuels shown through its investment in Chilean energy firm HIF Global.

  2. Kevin Spacey not guilty of all sexual assault charges – The Oscar-winning actor was cleared after a four-week trial in London, where he was found not guilty of seven counts of sexual assault and two counts of other serious sexual offences. The allegations were dated between 2004 to 2013, when Spacey served as artistic director at the Old Vic Theatre in London. Elton John also testified in defence of Spacey during the proceedings.

  3. LeBron James' son hospitalised after cardiac arrest during practice – 18-year-old Bronny James, the older son of LeBron James of NBA fame, was hospitalised following a cardiac arrest during basketball practice at the University of Southern California. Bronny is currently in stable condition and is no longer in the ICU.Read: What is a cardiac arrest


  1. Men should stay in the kitchen because it’s cooKING, not cooQUEEN, because it’s kitcHEn, not kitcHERn. But men had the last word — watch comedy sketch below.

  2. “Horologist” became the first Malaysian short film to premiere at San Diego Comic-Con festival and bagged the Best Animation award. The animation was created by Jared Lee of Grim Film, based on a manga he made during the Covid-19 lockdown drawing on his personal experience fighting testicular cancer, leading him down the rabbit hole of child adoption and, along the way, discovering issues such as child abandonment. Watch the trailer here.