Najib’s 1MDB trial, SRC appeal hearing vacated as key lawyer under quarantine

by BERNAMA / pic by ARIF KARTONO

KUALA LUMPUR – Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s (picture) trial at the High Court here over the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) fund scandal and his appeal relating to SRC International Sdn Bhd case at the Court of Appeal has been deferred as one of his key lawyers was under quarantine for COVID-19.

The matter was confirmed by lawyer Muhammad Farhan Muhammad Shafee via a What’s app message to reporters today.

“Both cases (SRC and 1MDB) had to be vacated this week because a key member of our team has to undergo testing and quarantine due to a significant close contact to a number of confirmed COVID-19 patients.

“Considering the rest of the team have been working closely with the lawyer, the necessary precautions need to be taken,” he said.

Meanwhile, deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib, via a What’s app message, said the defence team applied for the postponement last Friday.

“They sent a letter to court late Friday evening,” he said, adding that High Court Judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah had allowed the defence’s application.

Today, the defence were supposed to cross-examine former 1MDB chief executive officer Mohd Hazem Abdul Rahman, 49, who is the 10th prosecution witness.

He was on the stand since September last year.

Najib, 67, faces four charges of abusing his position to obtain gratification totalling RM2.3 billion in 1MDB funds and 21 counts of money laundering involving the same money.

In the SRC case, Najib is appealing against the High Court’s decision in sentencing him to 12 years’ jail and fine of RM210 million after finding him guilty on seven charges of criminal breach of trust, money laundering and abuse of position, involving RM42 million in SRC International funds.

His appeal hearing in the SRC case had been fixed for continuation this Thursday.