Travel Guides
Travel News

Leonardo DiCaprio testifies for prosecution at trial of Fugees rapper Pras Michel


Academy Award winner Leonardo DiCaprio took the stand Monday as the primary blockbuster witness within the star-studded trial of former Fugees member Pras Michel.

Michel is accused of taking part in a world campaign-finance conspiracy funded by Jho Low, a Malaysian businessman who allegedly stole billions of {dollars} from a Malaysian sovereign wealth fund, 1MDB. Michel has pleaded not responsible.

DiCaprio, who reportedly testified to the grand jury that handed up Michel’s indictment, just isn’t accused of any wrongdoing.

Though each Michel and Low are each going through expenses within the US, Low stays at massive so Michel is on trial alone.

DiCaprio testified for about an hour on his relationship with Low in a bid by prosecutors to point out that Low used stolen cash to curry favor with actors, fashions and politicians within the United States. It’s doubtless that prosecutors are utilizing DiCaprio as a charismatic determine to each clarify the extent of the alleged Malaysian cash scheme, and likewise to convey star energy that might outshine even Michel.

When authorities prosecutors referred to as DiCaprio as a witness, a number of members of the jury who had appeared bored in the course of the earlier witness snapped to consideration. One juror’s head shot up from her palms, whereas one other seemed round excitedly. A 3rd juror quietly clapped his palms collectively and leaned again in his seat.

DiCaprio entered the courtroom in a blue go well with surrounded by US Marshals. He spoke slowly throughout his testimony, and at instances was so quiet that District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, who’s presiding over the case, needed to ask him to talk up.

“At the danger of asking a silly query, what do you do for a dwelling” prosecutor Nicole Lockhart stated to DiCaprio, asking him to introduce himself.

“I’m an actor,” DiCaprio responded.

Leonardo DiCaprio testifies for prosecution at trial of Fugees rapper Pras Michel.

According to prosecutors, Low and DiCaprio had been launched by the stepson of former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak, who was charged in Malaysia in reference to the 1MDB corruption scandal.

On Monday, DiCaprio informed jurors about attending Low’s celebration in Las Vegas round 2010, which was their first introduction. DiCaprio stated he understood Low to be “kind of a prodigy within the enterprise world and ultra-successful.”

DiCaprio additionally stated he met Michel within the Nineteen Nineties and had attended a Fugees live performance. DiCaprio stated that it was attainable Michel attended a Thanksgiving meal at his residence, however that “reminiscence doesn’t serve.”

When DiCaprio was requested to establish Michel within the courtroom, Michel leaned again and waved to the actor.

Low and DiCaprio’s relationship was purely social at the start, DiCaprio testified, recounting “a mess of lavish events” around the globe, a number of of which Michel additionally allegedly attended. In one occasion, DiCaprio stated that Low flew a number of celebrities to Australia for New Year’s Eve, after which flew them again to Las Vegas in time rejoice the brand new yr once more.

“Did you make it again in time to rejoice” once more in Las Vegas, Michel’s protection lawyer David Kenner requested.

“It is dependent upon the way you look at it,” DiCaprio responded. The courtroom erupted in laughter.

DiCaprio informed the jury that he spoke with Low in 2012 concerning the ongoing presidential election.

“It was a causal dialog about what occasion he was in assist of, I informed him what occasion I used to be in assist of,” DiCaprio stated. “And he informed me that he, or he and a gaggle, had been going to make a major contribution to the Democratic Party,” he stated, noting the donation was round $20 million or $30 million.

“I stated ‘wow, that’s loads of cash,’” DiCaprio stated.

Prosecutors allege that cash was stolen from 1MDB, and that Michel helped Low make donations by a sequence of straw donors.

Low ultimately provided to fund a film for DiCaprio, he testified. DiCaprio’s attorneys, a manufacturing firm, and a 3rd occasion all performed background checks into Low and his funds, DiCaprio stated, and gave DiCaprio the inexperienced mild to make a cope with Low.

Leonardo DiCaprio testifies for prosecution at trial of Fugees rapper Pras Michel.

Prosecutors allege that Low laundered cash from 1MDB by a Los Angeles-based film manufacturing firm, Red Granite Pictures. Red Granite allegedly used some of the laundered cash to fund films, together with DiCaprio’s 2013 movie “The Wolf of Wall Street.” DiCaprio thanked Low by identify whereas accepting a Golden Globe for his position within the movie.

Low additionally gave cash to DiCaprio’s environmental basis, he testified, by buying a portray at a fundraising occasion and making donations by different companies entities.

DiCaprio testified that he stopped chatting with Low round 2015, when his representatives found an article that alleged Low was utilizing “unlawful funding from Malaysia and a mess of different locations.”

In 2016, prosecutors moved to grab belongings from “The Wolf of Wall Street,” in addition to a Picasso portray that an affiliate of Low’s allegedly purchased with stolen funds and gifted to DiCaprio.

A spokesperson for DiCaprio beforehand informed CNN that the actor is working with US prosecutors to return any funds he or his charities obtained from 1MDB.

This story has been up to date with further particulars.

Latest Travel News

Related posts

Stormie Mills unveils skull at Jackson Street, Bayswater

Van Gassen

The Uplifting Olympics Content We All Need Right Now

Van Gassen

COVID-19 causing diabetes among some severely infected patients, studies find – National

Van Gassen