Court: Climate Hardliner Leonardo DiCaprio was Paid $150,000 to Fly Private Jet to Attend Party for One Day
By DAVID NG
Leonardo DiCaprio allegedly flew an exclusive private plane to attend a party for just one day for which the actor was paid $150,000, according to testimony and evidence in a court trial involving a banker in the 1MDB scandal.
A witness claimed DiCaprio flew the private jet to Las Vegas in 2009 to celebrate the birthday of Malaysian financier Jho Low, who is now an international fugitive. Documents submitted as evidence in the case include a contract spelling out the details of the flight.
The trial has dealt another blow to DiCaprio’s image as a climate change activist. The Hollywood star has used his celebrity status to sound the alarm about global warming and rising carbon emissions. But he has also faced “eco-hypocrite” accusations for using private jets and luxury yachts despite his pleas for ordinary people to reduce their carbon footprints.
The federal trial in New York involves former Goldman Sachs banker Roger Ng, who stands accused of conspiring with fellow former Goldman banker Tim Leissner to help Low steal funds in exchange for kickbacks. On Tuesday, the government examined its witness Alex Cohen, the chief financial officer of Strategic Group, an entertainment and marketing company that arranged parties for Low.
Cohen testified to a revolving door of A-list celebrities who were paid handsome sums to party with Loh, according to a report from Bloomberg News. Among them was DiCaprio, according to the contract the defense showed the jury detailing the actor’s private jet flight.
The star’s $150,000 compensation was for attending the party, a dinner, and “private gambling activities.”
“So he showed up for one day” and then “he gets paid $150,000?” a defense attorney asked Cohen, according to Bloomberg.
“Yes,” Cohen reportedly said.
Low was a business associate of Riza Aziz, co-founder of Red Granite Pictures, which financed DiCaprio’s movie The Wolf of Wall Street.
This isn’t the first time environmentalist Leonardo DiCaprio has been caught flying a private jet. As Breitbart News reported, the star flew in a private jet in 2016 to accept an environmental award. Wikileaks showed the actor took six roundtrip private jet flights in a six-week period in 2014, all paid for by Sony.