Deepak sues Najib, Rosmah for RM656 mil over land deal

Businessman Deepak Jaikishan says the statement of claim and summons have been served on the plaintiffs,

PETALING JAYA: Businessman Deepak Jaikishan has filed a suit against ex-prime minister Najib Razak, his wife Rosmah Mansor and two others for conspiracy and interfering in a property deal that caused his company to suffer huge losses.

Deepak wants the court to award him RM656 million in damages or, as the alternative, wants the two pieces of land covering 223 acres (90ha) in Kapar, Selangor, to be returned to his company, Astacanggih Sdn Bhd.

He also wants further compensation in exemplary and aggravated damages from the couple and two other plaintiffs, Boustead Holdings Sdn Bhd and Bakti Development Wira Sdn Bhd.

In this suit, filed through Messrs Haniff Khatri & Co last Friday, he said the plaintiffs had conspired to defraud him and also interfered with the property deal using pressure and undue influence.

Deepak said the statement of claim and summons had been served on the plaintiffs today, with the exception of Bakti Development Wira.

Case management has been fixed before a deputy registrar on Nov 14.

Deepak said he was the majority shareholder of Astacanggih and a minority shareholder of Awan Megah Sdn Bhd where former Selangor Umno Wanita chief Raja Ropiaah Abdullah was the majority shareholder.

Deepak said Raja Ropiaah was also close to Najib and Rosmah as she was a politician and businesswoman.

He said in June 2005, Awan Megah entered into an agreement with the government to deliver a RM100 million National Defence Education Centre (Puspahanas) project in Kapar, Selangor.

He said in June 2007, Awan Megah offered Astacanggih to buy the land at RM118.5 million through an acquisition agreement.

In return, Astacanggih was to pay Awan Megah RM13 million in cash and obtain a bank guarantee of RM72.5 million as land bond for the project.

Deepak said the acquisition agreement was signed smoothly as he had given the couple RM30 million through Najib’s brother, Johari.

He said Najib, who was defence minister then, could approve the acquisition agreement.

Deepak said he performed his side of the bargain but Raja Ropiaah breached the agreement to provide him the land title to be transferred to Astacanggih.

He said he took action against Raja Roopiah and Awan Megah in 2011. However, he said he withdrew the suit as Najib and Rosmah forced him to do so.

Deepak said the couple also promised to compensate him from their business ventures elsewhere.

Deepak said the couple also used Boustead Holdings Sdn Bhd, whose majority shareholder is Lembaga Tabung Angkatan Tentera (LTAT), to purchase 80% of Astacanggih’s shares.

Deepak said in December 2012, he had no choice but to dispose of his 16 million shares in Astacanggih to Bakti Development Wira Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of LTAT.

He said Astacanggih was only paid RM30 million for the shares while the market value of the land in dispute between Astacanggih and Awan Megah was in the region of RM500 million.

Deepak said Najib and Rosmah further used Boustead and Bakti Development Wira to acquire the majority shares to weaken his bargaining position with Raja Ropiaah.

He said Boustead and Bakti Development Wira entered into a separate agreement with Awan Megah, thus sidelining Astacanggih and cause him to suffer huge financial losses.

Deepak said he and his company lost about RM300 million as a result of Boustead and Bakti Development Wira acquiring Astacanggih while the acquisition agreement with Awan Megah could have netted him RM500 million in profit.

Depak said he attempted to buy the shares back but could not do so due to pressure from the couple.

He said Boustead finally sold the land to UMW for RM640 million when the market price of the land was only RM130 million.

Second suit by Deepak

Meanwhile, Deepak and his younger brother, Rajesh, have filed a RM52.6 million lawsuit against Najib, Rosmah and three others for taking a loan on behalf of them.

The brothers claimed that Najib, Rosmah, Najib’s brother Johari, former Tabung Haji chairman Azeez Rahim and Bank Rakyat chairman Shukry Salleh were part of a conspiracy to “force” them to take the RM198.8 million bank loan from Bank Rakyat 10 years ago.

“My brother and I were acting as ‘proxies’ for Najib and Rosmah for the 2008 loan and the couple were supposed to settle the loan for us,” Deepak said in his suit.

Deepak added he and his brother had to surrender 80 apartments in Kuala Lumpur as collateral for the loan.

The siblings also claimed that Bank Rakyat threatened to auction off their apartments, based on Najib and Rosmah’s orders.

Deepak and Rajesh had also filed another suit against Bank Rakyat in June, claiming that the bank had auctioned off their apartments wrongly and at below the market price.

In the siblings’ Bank Rakyat suit, they claimed that the bank made the order to sell off their apartments after being instructed by Najib, Rosmah and three others.

The High Court fixed Nov 15 to hear the application by Bank Rakyat to strike out the suit filed by Deepak and his brother as well as the siblings’ application to strike out the bank’s counter-claim.

Deepak’s lawyer Haniff Khatri Abdulla said the siblings want their lawsuit against Najib, Rosmah and the three others to be tried together with the bank’s lawsuit.

The High Court will hear the application by Deepak and his brother to combine both lawsuits on Nov 30.