Najib claims trial to SRC money laundering charges


KUALA LUMPUR (March 13): Former premier Datuk Seri Najib Razak today claimed trial at the High Court here to three counts of money laundering involving RM47 million in 1Malaysia Development Bhd's former subsidiary SRC International Sdn Bhd.

Najib is charged with receiving three tranches of payment in his Ambank Islamic Bhd account. One tranche amounted to RM27 million while the other two involved RM10 million each.

He allegedly received the money in the Ambank Islamic account at AmIslamic Bank Bhd, Ambank Group Building, No. 55, Jalan Raja Chulan on July 8, 2014.

Najib is charged under the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001. He stands to face a maximum fine of RM5 million or maximum jail sentence of five years or both if convicted.

Deputy public prosecutors Manoj Kurup, Datuk Suhaimi Ibrahim and Muhammad Izzat Fauzan appeared for the prosecution while senior lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah appeared for Najib.

Initially, the money laundering charges were levelled on Najib on Jan 28 this year before High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali.

However, the charges were withdrawn by the prosecutors on Feb 7 before Nazlan, who is also the trial judge in the SRC case. Normally, an accused is not charged immediately at the High Court but initially at the lower courts before the case is transferred to the High Court.

Najib was re-charged at the Sessions Court on Feb 8, and the High Court allowed the case be transferred to the High Court two days later. The transfer led to the case being fixed for mention today.

At the High Court today, Manoj informed that the prosecution is asking for a mention date as the case may depend on Najib's pending appeal of other cases regarding SRC.

Manoj and Shafee agreed that Najib is given a personal bond with regard to these charges. With this, the High Court fixed April 17 as the date for the case to be mentioned.

Besides the SRC money laundering charges which Najib claimed trial to today, the former premier is also facing seven charges involving money laundering and abuse of power.

Earlier, Manoj and Shafee told Nazlan that Najib's appeal before the Court of Appeal on Monday and yesterday has yet to conclude and will resume on Friday.

Manoj and Shafee said it is uncertain whether the appellate court will deliver its decision on Friday. As such, Nazlan fixed this Monday as the mention date for Najib's case involving the seven charges. —

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