by RAHIMI YUNUS / pic by BERNAMA
THE High Court yesterday heard about payments for the installation of a 6,000-litre water tank and the construction of a storeroom at Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Razak’s house, besides payments to state Umno as the former prime minister’s multimillion SRC International Sdn Bhd trial entered Day 5.
A witness for the prosecution revealed that various cheques totalling millions of ringgit were issued from SRC-linked accounts to one of the recipients, Ihsan Perdana Sdn Bhd.
The prosecutor’s fifth witness, Badron Hisam Mohd, a senior manager at AmBank Group’s cheque processing centre, verified that 17 cheques were issued between December 2014 and March 2015, for amounts ranging from RM13,800 and RM20 million.
The evidence showed that SRC, one of the AmBank’s accounts involved, had issued a cheque of RM20 million and another cheque of more than RM103,000 to Ihsan Perdana.
Ihsan Perdana, alleged to an SRC’s corporate social responsibility partner, is believed to be one of the vehicles used to channel the RM42 million funds to various accounts including Najib’s accounts.
Cheques were issued among others to legal firm Hafarizam Wan & Aisha Mubarak (RM3.5 million), Penang Umno liaison (RM1 million), Johor Baru Umno (RM300,000), Asmadi Abu Talib (RM50,000), trustees of Rumah Penyayang Tun Abdul Razak (RM400,000) and Lim Soon Peng (RM238,914).
The defence questioned the 42-year old Badron Hisam on the cheques clearance and settlement process.
The cheques were digitally cleared through by a Bank Negara Malaysia’s system namely Sistem Penjelasan Imej Cek Kebangsaan or SPICK.
Upon cross-examination, Badron Hisam testified that there could be communications between the cheque processing centre and account’s relationship manager in the clearance process.
He also testified that the centre would need to contact and confirm with the bank’s customer for cheque instruction with the amount above RM50,000.
Asked by lead defence counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah on who the centre will call, Badron Hisam replied: “The staff will call contacts for the account’s signatories as stated in the database.”
The defence requested him to produce cheque images or reports on various other transactions from 2013 and 2015, in the next proceeding session.
Prosecution’s sixth witness, Zulkarnain Mohamad, a designer at ABS Trend Master Sdn Bhd, testified that he helped construct a storeroom at Najib’s residence in Jalan Langgak Duta, Kuala Lumpur in late 2014.
The works covered the construction of a storeroom, a kitchenette and wardrobe cabinets for a quoted price of RM243,000 (or RM234,000 as he could not exactly remember).
ABS Trend Master was one of the recipients of the 17 cheques issued revealed in the court yesterday. The company also repaired the house security post and garbage storage structure.
Zulkarnain, 46, said the company testified on payments made to the company amounting to RM150,000 via cheques.
Earlier in the proceeding, the defence questioned the relevance of Zulkarnain’s testimony in proving if the fund was illicit.
Meanwhile, prosecutor’s seventh witness, Mohammad Zakariyya Zearat Khan, the owner of a plumbing specialist company, MOZ Malaysia Sdn Bhd, also testified about repair works at Najib’s Langgak Duta house in 2015. MOZ Malaysia was also one of the payees of the cheques issued with an amount of RM56,500.
Mohammad Zakariyya, 35, testified the works covered the installations of a tank and pump to avoid any water supply outage at the residence.
He was the final witness in a trial where Najib faces seven charges including money laundering and criminal breach of trust related to RM42 million linked to SRC. The trial resumes on Monday.