Zahid to enter defence to all 47 CBT charges

by ASILA JALIL/ pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

The High Court this morning has decided for Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to enter defence for all 47 charges against him in relation to Yayasan Akalbudi funds.

He is currently facing eight charges for corruption, 12 charges for CBT and 27 for money laundering.

On March 19, 2021, the prosecution closed its case after calling 99 witnesses including Ahmad Zahid’s former special officer Datuk Seri Wan Ahmad Wan Omar; legal firm Lewis & Co partner B. Muralidharan, money changer Omar Ali Abdullah and Ahmad Zahid’s former executive secretary Major Mazlina Mazlan @ Ramly. The trial began on Nov 18, 2019.

Ahmad Zahid had pleaded not guilty to 12 CBT charges, eight counts of bribery and 27 for money laundering involving tens of millions of ringgit belonging to Yayasan Akalbudi.

For the CBT charges, Ahmad Zahid was alleged to have used the funds to make six payments for his personal credit cards usage, insurance policy and licence for his personal vehicles, remittances to a law firm and contributions to the Royal Malaysia Police Football Association.

The offences were allegedly committed at Affin Bank Berhad branch in Jalan Bunus off Jalan Masjid India, here, between Jan 13, 2014, and Dec 23, 2016. The charges, under Section 409 of the Penal Code, provide for a jail term of between two and 20 years, and with whipping, and fine, upon conviction.Ahmad Zahid was also charged with eight counts of bribery, where he was alleged to have accepted bribes from three companies, namely Mastoro Kenny IT Consultant & Services, Data Sonic Group Bhd and Profound Radiance Sdn Bhd as an inducement for him, in his capacity as Home Minister then, to help the companies to obtain MyEG projects, supply passport chips and to be appointed the operator of the migrant visa one-stop centres in Pakistan and Nepal, respectively.

He was charged with committing the offences, framed under Section 16(a)(B) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009, at the Maybank branch at Dataran Maybank in Jalan Maarof, Bangsar,here, between July 15, 2016, and March 15, 2018.

The Bagan Datuk Member of Parliament also faced 27 charges of money-laundering by engaging in direct transactions involving income from illegal activities between March 29, 2016, and April 11, 2018.