By Aathi Shankar
KUALA LUMPUR: SRC International Sdn Bhd director Datuk Suboh Yassin fled the country in 2015 following an advice by a stranger, the Kuala Lumpur High Court heard today, Thursday, June 20, 2019.
He claimed that he feared arrest by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).
Reading out his witness statement, the prosecution’s 42nd witness testified that he was planning to meet MACC officials to assist in their investigation on SRC when he received a call from unknown person.
The stranger, according to Suboh, had apparently introduced himself as a MACC investigator.
“I was about to go to MACC office, when I received a call from this stranger who told me not to go to the commission’s office. He indeed told me to leave the country immediately,” he testified at the trial of Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Suboh claimed following the stranger’s phone call, he feared for him and his family especially with what was happening in the country.
Accompanied by his wife, he fled and stayed in Bangkok for a month, which he claimed was on his own expenses.
In Bangkok, he had apparently met another stranger, a Thai national, who provided him and his wife free flight tickets to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE).
In his witness statement, Suboh said he and his wife had flown from Bangkok to Abu Dhabi and upon their arrival there, the couple were led by some people to Hotel Rosewood where they stayed for a week.
He claimed that all costs for his stay in Abu Dhabi were sponsored by, again, an unknown person.
After a week stay, Suboh and his wife purportedly returned home to Malaysia via Bangkok.
After the 14th General Election in 2018, he was contacted and told by SRC International former chief executive office and director Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil to again flee the country to evade investigations.
Suboh will be cross examined by Najib’s defence team on Monday, June 24, 2019.
Najib currently faces seven corruption charges pertaining to SRC International funds.
The charges were three each for CBT under Section 409 of the Penal Code and money laundering under Section 4 of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities (AMLA) Act 2001, and one for abuse of power under Section 23 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Act (MACC) 2009.
Earlier, former Secretary to the Federal Cabinet, Tan Sri Mazidah Abdul Majid testified that neither the First nor Second Finance Ministers had ever recused themselves from Cabinet meetings when discussing matters related to government link companies (GLCs) under the Ministry of Finance Incorporated.
The Finance Ministers included Tun Mahathir Mohamad, Tun Daim Zainuddin, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Najib.
“From my experience as the secretary, never before a finance minister had recused himself from a Cabinet meeting when making decisions regarding a company under MoF Inc.,” testified Mazidah, who held the position from 1990 until she retired early this year.
There are over 50 GLCs under MoF Inc.
One of the charge on Najib is that he abused his power as the finance minister by presiding over two Cabinet meetings that decided to give government guarantees to SRC International for the RM4 billion loan from Retirement Fund Incorporated (KWAP) in 2011.
SRC International is a wholly owned subsidiary of the 1Malaysia Development Board (1MDB), which comes under MoF Inc.