Court rejects 1MDB’s bid to transfer Arul Kanda, Irwan’s US$6.5b case to another judge

KUALA LUMPUR — 1Malaysia  Development Berhad (1MDB) today failed in its bid to transfer its US$6.59 billion suit against its former chief executive officer Arul Kanda Kandasamy and former chairman Tan Sri Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah to be heard before another judge.

This was after High Court Judicial Commissioner (JC) Datuk Raja Ahmad Mohzanuddin Shah Raja Mohzan dismissed the application and ordered the company to pay costs of RM4,000 each to Arul Kanda and Mohd Irwan.

Speaking to reporters after the proceedings in chambers, Mohd Irwan’s counsel Lavinia Kumaraendran said since the application was rejected, the trial will proceed in September as fixed previously.

Last year, 1MDB applied to have the two separate suits heard before one judge, on the grounds that the merits and facts of the two cases are similar.

In May 2021, 1MDB filed a suit against the duo over an alleged breach of trust and conspiracy which caused 1MDB to suffer losses amounting to US$1.83 billion, in relation to its investment in 1MDB-Petrosaudi Ltd, which was converted into the alleged Brazen Sky Limited investment, said to be found in the Bridge Global Fund.

1MDB also claimed that Arul Kanda and Mohd Irwan committed a breach of trust and conspiracy by misappropriating 1MDB’s funds, amounting to US$3.5 billion paid to Aabar Investments and US$1.265 billion paid to International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) on May 9, 2017.

1MDB alleged that Mohd Irwan also conspired with Arul Kanda to cause the company to implement the Employment Extension Agreement and make a substantial payment of RM2,905,200 to Arul Kanda in accordance with the agreement, regardless of 1MDB’s interests, causing the company to suffer losses and damage.

In this regard, 1MDB, among others, is demanding that the two defendants pay US$6.59 billion for the breach and Mohd Irwan pay an additional RM2.9 million in relation to the Employment Extension Agreement.

In 2022, the company also filed a US$8 billion suit against former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and seven others.

This suit is heard before High Court Judge Atan Mustaffa Yussof Ahmad. — BERNAMA / pic TMR FILE