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Court of Appeal affirms decision to strike out Deepak's suit against Najib, Rosmah, two companies

PUTRAJAYA (Oct 8): The Court of Appeal on Friday affirmed the High Court's decision to strike out a civil suit brought by a businessman against former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor and two others in a land deal that allegedly caused huge losses to the businessman's company.

A three-member bench led by Justice Datuk Hanipah Farikullah dismissed JR Deepak Jaikishan's (pictured) appeal, ruling that there was no merit in his appeal as the High Court judicial commissioner had extensively considered the pleadings and issues in making his findings.

“We find his findings on the issue of the locus of the appellant (Deepak) and the lacking of essential ingredients and particulars in the pleadings as considered by the appellant's counsel are correct in law,” she said, adding that no amendments could cure Deepak's statement of claim.

Justice Hanipah said the court was of the view that there was no error by the High Court judge that warranted appellate intervention.

Justice Hanipah, who sat with Justices Datuk Azizah Nawawi and Datuk See Mee Chun, ordered Deepak to pay costs of RM7,000 to Najib and Rosmah and the same amount to Boustead Holdings Bhd and its subsidiary Bakti Wira Development Sdn Bhd.

Deepak was appealing against the decision of the High Court in July last year to strike out his suit against Najib, Rosmah, Boustead Holdings and Bakti Wira Development.

In the appeal proceedings conducted virtually on Friday, lawyer Magita Hari Mogan submitted that her client (Deepak) should be given the opportunity to amend his statement of claim.

In his suit filed on Oct 12, 2018 against Najib, Rosmah and the two companies, Deepak claimed that his company suffered huge losses due to the conspiracy, fraud and undue influence by the defendants in a property deal. 

He claimed that as a director and majority shareholder of Astacanggih Sdn Bhd, he signed a land deal with Raja Ropiaah Raja Abdullah, a director and majority shareholder of Awan Megah (M) Sdn Bhd, over three pieces of land measuring 181.9 hectares in Mukim Kapar, Klang and Mukim Bukit Raja in the Petaling district.

Deepak claimed that a deposit of RM13 million was made by Astacanggih to Awan Megah and a land bond for RM72.5 million from Kuwait Finance House (Malaysia) Bhd was submitted to the Malaysian government.

However, he alleged that Awan Megah refused to produce the original land titles for transfer to Astacanggih.

Deepak contended that as a result of the conspiracy and interference from Najib and Rosmah, he was forced to sell 80% (16 million units) of his shares in Astacanggih to Boustead Holdings through Bakti Wira development.

He sought RM600 million in general damages, RM50 million in exemplary damages and RM26 million in aggravated damages.

Lawyer Robert Lazar represented the two companies, while Datuk David Matthews appeared for Najib and Rosmah.

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