KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 13): The lawyer representing Malaysia's former Prime Minister Najib Razak in his corruption case will be charged in relation to 1MDB.

Muhammad Shafee Abdullah will be presented with charges under the anti-money laundering act on Thursday morning, said Azam Baki, deputy chief commissioner at the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission. Troubled state fund 1MDB lies at the centre of worldwide investigations stretching from Singapore to New York.

The allegations levelled against his advocate would be another blow to Najib, who himself faces multiple counts of corruption, abuse of power and money laundering charges linked to the fund, whose full name is 1Malaysia Development Bhd.

Shafee has been a long-time lawyer for opposition coalition Barisan Nasional and the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), which previously ruled the country for more than 60 years before being toppled by the current government in May.

The trial date for Najib, who has consistently denied any wrongdoing, is set to begin in February next year.

Malaysia has completed more than half of its revived investigation into the fund with almost all local evidence compiled, Azam said in August. Now the anti-graft agency is collecting information from overseas with cooperation from the foreign authorities, including the US and Singapore.

Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has set a goal of recouping US$4.5 billion ($6.2 billion) of funds potentially lost through the troubled state investment fund. To that end, his administration has quickened the process to sell a US$250 million yacht and sought the return of a US$35 million jet parked in Singapore.

Singapore has ordered the transfer of $15.3 million of funds in various currencies to a special 1MDB recovery bank account, a fraction of the $240 million that its police have seized from bank accounts and properties linked to 1MDB.