Lawyer calls 18-hour search of Najib's home 'harassment'

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Malaysian politician Anwar Ibrahim who was granted a royal pardon speaks to supporters in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

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More than 10 police cars and a police truck arrived at the residence of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, at Jalan Langgak Duta here at 10.15pm.

Najib said his deputy Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who is also the former deputy prime minister, would take over as the new president of UMNO, the main component of the alliance.

"It has been done", one source said when asked if the notice had been delivered to Najib at his family home.

Najib was deeply unpopular and facing allegations of corruption and misappropriation of money from a state fund, the Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Najib has denied any wrongdoing.

Nearly 300 boxes of designer handbags were also seized in raids at luxury condominiums in downtown Kuala Lumpur's Jalan Raja Chulan, state news agency Bernama reported on Friday.

Items such as Birkin handbags from Hermes, watches and other valuables were carted out of the condominium at the upmarket Pavilion Residences, police said.

On Thursday Najib's lawyer, Harpal Singh Grewal, told reporters that he understood that the items had been seized in order to advance an investigation under the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Acts, Bernama said.

Mr Najib and his wife Rosmah Mansor have been blacklisted by the Immigration Department and can not leave the country.

On Tuesday, new Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he expected Najib would be charged following allegations that the former prime minister siphoned off hundreds of millions of U.S. dollars from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) fund.

Authorities in at least six countries are investigating the multi-billion-dollar scandal. His lawyer on Thursday denounced the long search of Najib's home as "harassment".

"Our personnel checked these bags and discovered various currencies including Malaysian ringgit, United States dollars, watches and jewellery in 72 bags", he said.

The U.S. Justice Department said previous year in a filing in a civil lawsuit that almost $30 million of funds stolen from 1MDB was used to buy jewellery for Rosmah, including a rare 22-carat pink diamond set in a necklace.

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