Ahmad Zahid’s corruption trial postponed next year

Former deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s corruption trial involving Yayasan Akalbudi (YAB) funds has been postponed to January next year pending an appeal over a ruling in relation to witnesses statements.

High Court Judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah vacated the hearing today and tomorrow as well as on Nov 9 and 10 after Ahmad Zahid lead counsel Datuk Hisyam Teh Poh Teik applied to postpone the trial.

The judge fixed 21 days for the hearing namely on Jan 16-19, Jan 30-31, Feb 7-9, March 27-30, April 10-13, and May 15-18.

Earlier, Hisyam said the defence requested to adjourn the trial pending Ahmad Zahid’s appeal against the High Court’s dismissal of his application to obtain recorded statements of 15 witnesses from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).

He said the appeal is scheduled to be heard on Nov 14 at the Court of Appeal.

“Whatever the decision by the Court of Appeal, this will assist the defence in determining the witnesses that we call before My Lord.

“There are quite a number of witnesses being offered by the defence which we will focus upon but we will need guidance from the Court of Appeal with regards to whether we are able to get their statements or otherwise, so we are in a dilemma. In the name of fairness, we ask the court to wait for the outcome of Nov 14,” said the lawyer.

He also said that a witness from Bagan Datuk who was supposed to testify today was unwell and the defence did not have any other witnesses to call for the time being.

So far the defence has called six witnesses including Ahmad Zahid.

Ahmad Zahid, 69, is facing 47 charges, namely 12 on criminal breach of trust, eight on corruption and 27 on money laundering involving tens of millions of ringgit belonging to YAB. — BERNAMA