Travel agency objects to third party notice in 1MDB forfeiture claim

MACC has filed 41 forfeiture suits in efforts to recover RM270 million said to be from 1MDB.

KUALA LUMPUR: Rayhar Travels Sdn Bhd, a respondent in a suit filed by the government to forfeit funds allegedly sourced from 1MDB, is objecting to a gazette notification to allow third parties to participate in the proceeding.

Lawyer Md Yunos Shariff, appearing for the company which specialises in haj and umrah packages, told the High Court today that it would amount to an admission of liability by his client if the gazette notice is heard first.

“The notice of motion (forfeiture suit) and allowing the application to gazette a third party notice without a response from my client amounts to an admission,” Yunos told judicial commissioner Ahmad Shahrir Mohd Salleh.

However, deputy public prosecutor Nik Haslini Hashim said the gazetting of such a notice is only to allow third parties to come forward and claim an interest in the property involved.

“The court can hear and determine (any objection by the respondent) after the issuance of the notice,” she said.

The court has fixed Aug 1 to hear the prosecution’s application and determine whether the gazetting of the third party notice should be allowed.

Rayhar Travel’s objection will also be heard on the same day.

Also up for case management before the same court today were the forfeiture suits against Kelantan Umno, Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah, Yayasan Tun Hussein Onn, IPG Mediabrand Sdn Bhd, Akademi Pemuda and Sim Sai Hoon.

Sim, also known as Rita Sim, is the director of research firm Centre for Strategic Engagement Sdn Bhd.

The respondents appearing before Md Yunos are said to have received a total of RM6.1 million.

These are among 41 forfeiture suits filed by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, which is seeking to recover RM270 million said to be from 1MDB.