Judge raises questions as to how Jho Low was able to commandeer SRC International’s account to affect the transactions
by RAHIMI YUNUS / pic by TMR FILE
DATUK Seri Mohd Najib Razak’s defence counsel told the Court of Appeal that only Jho Low (picture) could explain why SRC International Sdn Bhd’s funds ended up in the former’s bank accounts.
Court of Appeal Justice Datuk Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil raised questions about how a person like Jho Low, whose real name is Low Taek Jho, who without any official position at SRC International, was able to commandeer the company’s account to affect the transactions.
“The thrust of your defence is that Jho Low manipulated everything. How is it possible for someone, who was not at all connected to SRC, commandeers everything?
“Why did Jho Low put all the money in Datuk Seri Najib’s account?,” Abdul Karim asked defence counsel Harvinderjit Singh at the Court of Appeal in Putrajaya yesterday.
Harvinderjit: “That is a good question… but, only Jho Low can answer that.”
He said Jho Low was involved in the monetary transfers along with other individuals including SRC International MD Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil; SRC director Terence Geh; Yayasan Rakyat 1Malaysia CEO Ung Su Ling; and account relationship manager at AmBank Group Bhd Joanna Yu Jing Ping.
The defence contended that these people were involved in the transactions while Najib had no knowledge about it.
Harvinderjit: “Why would the prime minister (PM) knowingly take money from a government-linked company and put it in his accounts.”
Najib was found guilty of all the seven charges — one count of abuse of position, three counts of criminal breach of trust (CBT) and three counts of money laundering — relating to the misappropriation of RM42 million belonging to SRC International, a former unit of 1Malaysia Development Bhd.
The RM42 million funds were channelled into Najib’s bank accounts through Gandingan Mentari Sdn Bhd and Ihsan Perdana Sdn Bhd, purportedly SRC International’s corporate social responsibility partner.
Najib was sentenced to 12 years of jail and fined RM210 million for abuse of power involving RM42 million of funds misappropriated from SRC International.
High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali also sentenced Najib to 10 years of jail each for three CBT offences and 10 years of jail each for three money-laundering offences committed in the fund’s embezzlement.
The former PM is currently in the appeal hearing to overturn the conviction and sentence before a three-member bench chaired by Abdul Karim along with Justices Datuk Has Zanah Mehat and Datuk Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera.
Read our previous report here