A federal investigation has concluded that the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation was involved in an international corruption scandal. It all started back in July when Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch announced the filing of civil forfeiture complaints that sought the recovery of more than $1 billion worth of assets.
The complaints allege that more than $3.5 billion that belonged to 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) was inappropriately used by executive officials and their affiliates. Jho Low, Malaysian financier and a long-time friend of Leonardo DiCaprio’s, was one of the officials found guilty of misusing the funds.
The funds were supposed to be used for improving the well being of the Malaysian people by building global partnerships and increasing foreign investments. But Low, who is notorious for being a party boy, allegedly used the money to take DiCaprio on a Las Vegas gambling trip.
Now feds are investigating whether or not the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation received any money from Low or his affiliates. The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation is a wildlife and ecosystem conservation charity. DiCaprio has hosted several fundraising events throughout the years, some of which Low attended.
Yesterday, Leonardo DiCaprio announced that he is cooperating with the feds. He also announced that he will be returning more than $1 million worth of donations that were tied to the scandal.
But the investigation goes further than that. Federal investigators are also looking into whether The Wolf of Wall Street was in part funded by stolen money that belonged to 1MDB. Investigators are suspicious that it was since Low was given his own full-screen “special thanks” in the closing credits.
The recent scandal has caused widespread outrage. Lukas Straumann of the Bruno Manser Fund (a Malaysian rainforest conservation charity) expressed his anger at DiCaprio’s lack of transparency.
“We are demanding full disclosure. He should have done this earlier,” Straumann stated.