Najib, Irwan’s trial on RM6.6 bil CBT cases transferred to High Court

Dates for the trial of former prime minister Najib Razak and ex-Treasury secretary-general Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah will be fixed later.

KUALA LUMPUR: The trial of former prime minister Najib Razak and ex-Treasury secretary-general Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah, who are facing six charges of criminal breach of trust (CBT) amounting to RM6.6 billion, will commence in the High Court.

Judicial Commissioner Rozana Ali Yusof allowed applications by both the accused under Section 417 of the Criminal Procedure Code.

However, she was unable to fix the trial dates as documents relating to the case had not been sent to the High Court.

Rozana said the court would inform the prosecution and the defence of a mention date later.

Earlier, lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, who appeared for Najib, said his client was making the application to transfer the case from the Sessions Court to “expedite the trial in the interest of justice”.

Lawyer K Kumaraendran, who represented Irwan, said his client had no objection to the transfer since it would be a joint trial.

Deputy public prosecutor Jamil Aripin agreed to the trial being held in the High Court.

On Oct 25, Najib, 65, and Irwan, 61, pleaded not guilty to all the charges linked to the 1MDB scandal, the East Coast Rail Link and two gas pipeline projects in the peninsula and Sabah.

Najib and Irwan were alleged to have committed all the offences at the Finance Ministry Complex in Putrajaya between Dec 21, 2016 and Dec 18, 2017.

They were charged under Section 409 of the Penal Code, which provides for a maximum jail term of 20 years and fine if found guilty.

Najib is also facing 21 money laundering charges and four charges of power abuse linked to 1MDB.

The trial before High Court judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah has been fixed for three weeks from April 15.

The Pekan MP is also facing three charges of criminal breach of trust and one for abusing his power in the transfer of RM42 million of SRC International funds into his bank account.

He was also charged with three counts of money laundering related to the same transaction, under the Anti-Money Laundering, Prevention of Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001.

The offences were allegedly committed between Dec 24 and 29, 2014.

Trial before High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali will begin on Feb 18.