By Aathi Shankar
The prosecution had failed to establish a prima facie case against former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak pertaining to the corruption charges involving the SRC International Sdn Bhd.
Therefore Najib must be discharged and acquitted from all 7 charges pertaining to alleged misappropriation of RM42 million belonging to SRC.
The Pekan MP’s defence team concluded this in its oral submission on the Najib-SRC Trial at the Kuala Lumpur High Court today, Tuesday, October 22, 2019.
The prosecution led by hired lawyer Datuk V. Sithambaram called up 57 witnesses to testify before presiding High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali for the Najib -SRC Trial, which began on Wednesday, April 3 this year and concluded on Tuesday, August 27.
Today and tomorrow will be the day of submissions by both the prosecution led by hired lawyer Datuk V. Sithambaram and defence led by Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah.
Najib was charged with 7 counts of corruption involving SRC International’s RM42 million.
The charges were 3 each for criminal breach of trust (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 for abuse of power under Section 23 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Act (MACC) 2009.
Najib had allegedly committed the offences at AmIslamic Bank Bhd in Jalan Raja Chulan and the Prime Minister’s Office in Putrajaya between Aug 17, 2011, and Feb 10, 2015.
In his submissions, defence counsel Harvinderjit Singh stressed that the prosecution had failed to prove a prima facie case against Najib.
He said since no prima facie case has been made out on all the charges, an order of acquittal for the Pekan MP as provided for in Section 180(2) of the Criminal Procedure Code ought to be recorded.
The defence submitted that the prosecution evidence failed to establish Najib’s corrupt involvement in matters pertaining to SRC International between 2010 and 2012.
The matters included the Cabinet’s decision to grant federal government guarantees to SRC International to secure RM4 billion loan from Retirement Fund Incorporated (KWAP).
Harvinderjit argued that prosecutors failed to establish the existence of a corrupt arrangement which Najib could be said to be a party to.
Indeed, the defence submitted that the evidence led to a reasonable inference that transactions involving SRC International’s RM42mil were actually done at the behest of others with own ulterior motives, objectives and benefits.
He concluded that the RM42mil cannot be said amounted to gratification as consideration for a use of the office of position by Najib.
Hence, the prosecution failed to prove a prima facie case and the former premier should be freed from all charges.