Guan Eng Trial: March 1 hearing for application to obtain Whatsapp chat

KUALA LUMPUR – The Sessions Court here today fixed March 1 to hear the defence’s application to obtain WhatsApp conversations between two businessmen involving an alleged payment of RM2 million to former Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng (picture).

The two businessmen are G. Gnanaraja and Consortium Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd (CZCSB) director Datuk Zarul Ahmad Mohd Zulkifli.

Judge Azura Alwi set the date after Guan Eng’s lawyer, Gobind Singh Deo, informed the court that the defence was applying for the notes of proceedings on a cheating case involving Gnanaraja at the Shah Alam Sessions Court to support its application.

Gobind said had previously applied to the Shah Alam Court to obtain the notes of proceedings but it was rejected.

“That is why we have once again informed the (Shah Alam) court on the importance of securing the notes. We have been informed that we will obtain them within two weeks. Therefore, we are applying for an adjournment on the application for the forensic report while waiting for the notes of proceedings,” he said.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Datuk Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin did not object to the application to postpone today’s proceedings.

Earlier, Gobind told the court that the notes of proceedings contained the testimony of prosecution witness, Azli Adam, who was then the CZCSB Senior Vice President of Finance and Corporate Services, on the RM2 million payment, which allegedly differed from the evidence given in Lim’s trial involving an undersea tunnel and road construction project in Penang.

“During the trial at the Shah Alam court, the witness (Azli) testified that RM2 million payment voucher dated Aug 17, 2017 was given to a third party for a specific purpose that had nothing to do with Lim, whereas the 28th prosecution witness testified in this court that the money concerned was given to Lim.

“Both cases involve the same witness and the same payment voucher and cheque. Therefore, we need to get a copy of the notes of proceedings from the Shah Alam Court because this witness is not telling the truth,” Gobind said.

Lim, 62, is facing an amended charge of using his position as the Penang Chief Minister to accept a bribe of RM3.3 million in helping a company owned by Zarul Ahmad to obtain a construction project worth RM6,341,383,702 at the Office of the Chief Minister of Penang, 28th Floor, Komtar, George Town between January 2011 and August 2017.

For the second amended charge, Lim is accused of soliciting a bribe from Zarul Ahmad, namely 10 per cent of the company’s profits, as an inducement for obtaining the project and is accused of committing the act near The Gardens Hotel, Lingkaran Syed Putra, Mid Valley City here in March 2011.

Lim also faces two charges of causing two plots of land worth RM208.8 million owned by the Penang government to be disposed of to two companies allegedly linked to the undersea tunnel project. – Bernama