Court dismisses AG’s bid to delay Najib’s 1MDB trial

Former prime minister Najib Razak says he and his defence team might be prejudiced if the 1MDB and SRC International trials proceed concurrently.

KUALA LUMPUR: Former prime minister Najib Razak’s 1MDB trial over alleged money laundering and abuse of power will proceed as scheduled on Aug 19.

High Court judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah, in dismissing Attorney-General Tommy Thomas‘ application to delay the 1MDB trial until Najib’s SRC International case is over, said the court did not find any reasonable cause to further delay the case.

“It is in the public interest for the (1MDB) case to proceed,” he said, adding the trial had been stalled twice previously.

The formal application to postpone the 1MDB trial was filed after the same judge rejected Thomas’ request for the court to begin the 1MDB case in October.

The 1MDB case will, therefore, start on Aug 19 and run until Nov 14.

Najib’s on-going SRC International trial was supposed to end on Aug 15 but Thomas had previously said it was moving more slowly than the prosecution had expected.

Najib, in his affidavit filed in support of Thomas’ postponement bid, said he and his defence team might be prejudiced if both the 1MDB and SRC International trials proceeded at the same time.

Najib was slapped with 25 charges of money laundering and abuse of power last September over alleged 1MDB funds in his AmBank account.

He was accused of abusing his position to obtain RM2.28 billion in bribes in February 2011 and December 2014.

He was also said to have transferred the RM2.28 billion in illegal funds to his bank account and to have subsequently used the money.