Saturday, December 7

Najib shocked to be called for defence — Counsel

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Muhammad Shafee Abdullah

KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak was shocked to be called for defence on all seven charges of misappropriating RM42 million in SRC International Sdn Bhd funds.

His defence counsel, Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah said, the former prime minister was expecting for an acquittal of all the charges at the prosecution stage.

“Najib was expecting an acquittal of all charges because we have rebutted the presumption (during submissions) even within the prosecution case,” he told reporters at the Kuala Lumpur High Court here yesterday.

Muhammad Shafee was commenting on the decision made by High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali who earlier ordered Najib, 66, to enter his defence on three counts of criminal breach of trust (CBT), three counts of money laundering and one count of abuse of power in relation to the funds.

The judge arrived at the decision after finding that the prosecution had established a prima facie case against the Pekan MP who is accused of committing the offences between Aug 17, 2011 and March 2, 2015.

The court fixed Dec 3 and 4, Dec 9 until 12, and Dec 16 to 19 for Najib to enter his defence.

Commenting further, Muhammad Shafee said, the defence team was expecting for an acquittal at this stage as they were confident that the submissions that they produced in court were overwhelming both factually as well as legally.

However he said, trials could never be predicted as their (defence) view and another person’s view are different.

However, Muhammad Shafee said a defence trial could also be the chance for the people to hear the real story from Najib because the former prime minister has his version of what happened in SRC.

“As far as he (Najib) knows and what are the things that he can dispute in relation to whether or not he actually controlled SRC which we said he never controlled SRC as a minister of finance. Najib will testify what really transpired in the Ministry of Finance,” he said.

The counsel also said a few professional witnesses which he declined to mention are expected to be called to testify during the defence stage. – Bernama