DOJ Building (Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM)

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. has agreed to pay the Justice Department close to $2.8 billion and admit wrongdoing in Malaysia’s 1MDB scandal, people familiar with the matter have told Bloomberg. The deal may be announced within days, the news outlet reported Tuesday.

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Bloomberg reported that the deal, part of an international action, “will let the parent company avoid a U.S. criminal conviction,” according to the people, who asked not to be named discussing the confidential talks. “The payment to the Justice Department is broadly in line with the bank’s prior reserves and analysts’ estimates.”

“The deal, expected to come just weeks before the U.S. presidential election, would remove uncertainty for the bank following years of investigations and negotiations with the Justice Department over the firm’s fundraising for the 1MDB investment fund,” Bloomberg said.

The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that a Goldman subsidiary in Asia tied to the misconduct is expected to plead guilty this week, according to people familiar with the matter. “The parent company will accept an agreement that requires it to admit fault but defers prosecution on the charges, the people said, avoiding a guilty plea that could have crippled its ability to do business,” the Journal reported.

The 1MDB scandal centers on 1 Malaysia Development Berhad, a sovereign-wealth fund that raised about $12 billion, a good portion of which was said to be acquired via money laundering.

In 2015, the FBI began investigations regarding money laundering involving 1MDB, and allegations were lodged that $155 million was diverted from 1MDB to help finance the 2013 film “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

In all, “Goldman Sachs may pay roughly $5 billion once accords with Malaysia, the Justice Department and other agencies are tallied together,” Bloomberg said.

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