Najib didn’t report RM42 million as investigations underway, says defence

Timothy Achariam Bede Hong

Najib Razak at the Kuala Lumpur High Court today. The defence for his SRC International trial today submitted that Najib had let a joint-agency investigation in 2015 proceed over the RM42 million deposited into his personal bank accounts. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Seth Akmal, October 23, 2019.

FORMER prime minister Najib Razak did not lodge a police report in mid-2015 in relation to the RM42 million that was credited into his personal bank accounts because investigations into SRC International were under way, his lawyer said.

Defence counsel Harvinderjit Singh told the Kuala Lumpur High Court that an article on 1Malaysia Development Bhd, published by Sarawak Report on July 6, 2015, had sparked a joint-investigation by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, police, Attorney-General’s Chambers and Bank Negara.

“The agencies were already investigating the matter, so he (Najib) left it to them,” said Harvinderjit when submitting for the defence today.

“Why need a police report?” he added.

Yesterday, the prosecution argued that if Najib was innocent, he would have lodged a police report upon discovering RM42 million in his personal bank accounts.

“If you are the prime minister of a country and if somebody banked RM42 million into your account, I think any normal person would lodge a police report and have the matter investigated.

“But nothing of the sort happened,” said ad hoc prosecutor V. Sithambaram during the prosecution’s submission yesterday.

SRC International, formed on January 7, 2011, was a subsidiary of 1MDB before ownership was transferred the following year to the Minister of Finance (MoF) Inc, headed then by Najib.

Between December 24, 2014 and February 6, 2014, a total of RM42 million was transferred into Najib’s private AmBank accounts via SRC International subsidiary Gandingan Mentari Sdn Bhd, and corporate social responsibility (CSR) partner Ihsan Perdana Sdn Bhd.

Najib, 66, faces three counts of criminal breach of trust, one charge of abusing his position and three counts of money laundering over SRC International funds amounting to RM42 million.

The Pekan MP was charged with committing the offences at AmIslamic Bank Bhd in Jalan Raja Chulan and the Prime Minister’s Office in Putrajaya between August 17, 2011, and February 10, 2015.

He faces up to 20 years’ imprisonment upon conviction.

Lead defence counsel Muhammad Shafee Abdullah later told reporters that Najib came to know about the money around the same time the public found out after Sarawak Report published an expose and AmBank was raided on July 6, 2015. 

“Datuk Seri Najib knew that investigations had been undertaken. So why lodge a report? For what? The reason you lodge a report is so that the police undertake an investigation.” 

Shafee added that Najib wanted to avoid a political “trap”: “He does not want to fall into a trap like what happened to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim lodged a report about Umi Hafilda (Ali) and then an investigations were undertaken and then he was charged with interfering with investigations.” 

“So Datuk Seri Najib did the right thing. Don’t lodge the police report because the report is already there, the investigation is ongoing, don’t interfere. Let the investigation run its course.”

Umi Hafilda was a prosecution witness in Anwar’s first sodomy trial in 1998. She is also the sister of Azmin Ali, then Anwar’s private secretary.

Kuala Lumpur High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali will decide whether there is a prima facie case against the former prime minister, after which Najib will be asked to enter his defence.

Nazlan will deliver his decision on November 11.

Najib is represented by a dozen lawyers led by Shafee while Attorney-General Tommy Thomas leads the prosecution. – October 23, 2019.

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  • Don't twist. The team was formed to investigate 1MDB case and not SRC and KWAP

    Posted 4 years ago by Penganalisa L · Reply

  • Alasan je ni Pi'ee oiii.

    Posted 4 years ago by Malaysia Baru 09052018 · Reply