Najib fails in SRC verdict review bid, stays in jail

THE Federal Court on Friday rejected the review bid by former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Najib Razak to set aside his conviction and sentencing in the SRC International corruption case.

The decision was made by a five-member bench chaired by Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak Datuk Abdul Rahman Sebli. The other members include apex court judges Datuk Vernon Ong Lam Kiat, Datuk Rhodzariah Bujang, Datuk Nordin Hassan and Court of Appeal judge Datuk Abu Bakar Jais.

Najib’s legal team, led by Tan Sri Mohamed Shafee Abdullah, submitted four grounds for a review, which includes the Federal Court’s decision to reject his application to adduce fresh evidence relating to the then High Court judge Datuk Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali.

The bench dismissed all four grounds on a 4-1 majority ruling, citing irrelevance and due process followed at all judiciary levels. Vernon Ong read out the dismissal verdict while Abdul Rahman dissented.

A Federal Court bench chaired by Chief Justice Tun Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat in August reaffirmed a High Court decision for Najib to serve 12 years imprisonment and RM210 million in fine on corruption charges and money laundering. Najib is currently serving his sentence at the Kajang Prison.

The review bid was Najib’s last legal avenue to overturn his conviction. The remaining option for the former prime minister is to apply for a royal pardon, which is at the discretion of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. – TMR