Court to set new trial dates for Muhammad Shafee’s money laundering case

by BERNAMA/ pic by BERNAMA

THE High Court here has set Aug 10 for case management to fix new dates for the trial of Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah (picture), who is facing two counts of money laundering charges involving RM9.5 million allegedly received from former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, and two charges of making false statements to the Inland Revenue Board (IRB).

Counsel Sarah Abishegam, who is representing Muhammad Shafee in making the request, told the High Court Judge Datuk Muhammad Jamil Hussin that the new trial dates to be set after two of her client’s application to challenge the appointment of former Federal Court judge Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram from leading the prosecution team were completed.

One of the applications was for judicial review and the other was a criminal application.

“The application for judicial review will be heard at the High Court on July 13, while the appeal application against the criminal court decision dismissing the application filed by Muhammad Shafee to challenge Gopal Sri Ram’s appointment will be heard at the Court of Appeal on July 24,” she said.

Deputy public prosecutor Afzainizam Abdul Aziz did not object to the request.

Prior to this, the High Court fixed 16 days beginning March 9 for the trial.

On Sept 13, 2018, Shafee, 66, pleaded not guilty to receiving proceeds from unlawful activity via cheques issued by Najib, which were remitted into his CIMB Bank Berhad account.

He allegedly received a cheque for RM4.3 million on Sept 13, 2013, and another for RM5.2 million on Feb 17, 2014, and committed the two offences at CIMB Bank Bhd, J2 & K1, Taman Tunku, Bukit Tunku, here.

The charge, framed under Section 4(1)(a) of the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001, carries a fine not exceeding RM5 million or up to five years’ jail or both upon conviction.

Muhammad Shafee is also facing two charges of being involved in transactions of proceeds from unlawful activity, that is by making inaccurate statements and in contravention of paragraph 113(1)(a) of the Income Tax Act 1967 for financial years ending Dec 31, 2013, and Dec 31, 2014.

He allegedly committed the offences at the IRB’s Duta branch at Kompleks Pejabat Kerajaan, Jalan Tunku Abdul Halim here on March 3, 2015, and June 29, 2015.

For this, Muhammad Shafee is liable to be jailed for a maximum of 15 years and fined not less than five times the amount of proceeds from the unlawful activity.