A-list actor Leonardo DiCaprio was made to take the stand as part of a federal trial slated against recording artist Prakazrel "Pras" Michel, known to be a founding member of the Fugees, who stands accused of directly funneling funds into the re-election campaign for former president Barack Obama back in 2012.
48-year-old DiCaprio was previously associated with the new fugitive Malaysian financier Jho Low, who allegedly gave the funds to Michael so he could donate to the campaign through a number of shell accounts. Michel stands accused of conspiring to make highly illegal campaign contributions using foreign funds, witness tampering, and overall failure to register as a foreign agent of the Chinese government.
The actor, who was on the stand for roughly an hour at that time, stated that he thought Low was "sort of a prodigy in the business world and ultra-successful."
Apparently, low stated to the actor that he had plans to contribute funds to the campaign. "It was a significant sum — something to the tune of $20-30 million," stated DiCaprio in court on Monday. "I said, ‘Wow that’s a lot of money!’"
DiCaprio was a known associate of Low for quite a few years. The financier also helped fund one of the actor's major films, "The Wolf of Wall Street," which ended up earning him a Golden Globe for Best Actor. DiCaprio was known to often party with Low, going with him on a number of private jets to events where Michel was sometimes present as well, he stated.
Michel was also selected to help process the donations because Low could not legally do so because of his status as a foreigner, as expressed in the election laws of the United States. Prosecutors officially charged Michel with accepting tens of millions of dollars in exchange for lobbying the government as an intermediary for both Low and the Chinese government.
Low stands accused of directly embezzling a staggering $4.5 billion from Malaysia’s state investment fund that is known as 1MDB, as explained by The New York Post.
Other witnesses also testified that Michel sent them thousands of dollars and asked that they make a series of secret donations to Obama's campaign, the post stated. Michel was allegedly paid a total of $70 million due to his efforts.
Both Low and Michel are also standing accused of lobbying the Trump administration, on behalf of Beijing, to extradite a Chinese dissident living in America, as reported by NBC News.