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Lebanese jeweller pays security deposit for trial against Rosmah to proceed

KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 11): Lebanese jeweller Global Royalty SAL has paid a RM75,000 security deposit in order to have its US$14.79 million (RM60 million) suit against former first lady Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, involving 44 pieces of jewellery sent to her in February last year which are said to be missing, proceed.

Global Royalty's lawyer Datuk David Gurupatham told reporters the sum was paid on Wednesday, and as far as their client is concerned, it wants the hearing of the suit to proceed as scheduled from Oct 21 to 24.

"We have three witnesses, namely the jeweller Samer Halimeh, the investigating officer and another witness whom I cannot reveal," he told reporters after the case management of the matter before Justice Wong Chee Lin today.

Rosmah's lawyers Datuk K Kumaraendran, Rajivan Nambiar and Mohd Reza Rahim said she will also testify in the trial.

It was previously reported that Rosmah wanted the jeweller to pay RM500,000 in security costs, as the firm is a foreign company. She wants to ensure that should the company loses, it is able to pay legal costs to her.

However, Justice Wong had on Sept 17 directed Global Royalty to pay RM75,000 as security costs, and that it should be paid by today or risk the suit being struck out. Hence the payment was made on Wednesday.

Global Royalty filed the suit on June 26 last year, demanding Rosmah return the 44 pieces of jewellery sent to her for her viewing or pay the total costs of it.

In its statement of claim, Global Royalty, which is an international wholesale jewellery firm, alleged Rosmah had been its long-standing customer and that the firm would send consignments of jewellery to her on her request.

She would then evaluate or purchase the items, which she would pay for on her own or through a third party.

Global Royalty, which has been supplying jewellery for royalty and the rich and famous from all over the world, claimed the items not chosen would normally be returned and, in certain situations, Rosmah would borrow the jewellery and return it later to the firm.

The firm also claimed that Rosmah would receive the jewellery personally or through its personnel/agent in Kuala Lumpur, Singapore or Dubai.

Global Royalty claimed that on Feb 10 last year, it sent 44 pieces of jewellery, including a diamond necklace, earrings, rings, bracelets and a tiara, each worth between US$124,000 and US$925,000, to Rosmah by hand, through two of its agents.

During the handover, Rosmah also acknowledged and accepted the terms and conditions stated in Memorandum No. 926 relating to the items, the firm claimed.

Global Royalty alleged that Rosmah, in a letter dated May 22 last year, also confirmed and acknowledged receiving the items, but said the items were no longer in her custody, as they had been seized and were with the Malaysian authorities.

The firm claimed that it was the owner of the jewellery at all material times, and that the ownership had never been transferred to Rosmah.

Gurupatham had previously indicated they managed to identify four out of the 44 jewellery which had been kept by the police in Bank Negara for safekeeping, but the government is claiming there is only one.

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