1MDB suit against landowner transferred to Penang High Court

1MDB claims the Penang landowner accepted its proposal over the acquisition of land in Ayer Itam, Penang.

KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court here today allowed an application by a landowner, who was sued by 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) for RM6 million for allegedly breaching an agreement involving 234.7 acres of land in Air Itam, Penang, to transfer the case to the Penang High Court.

Lawyer Theomus Foo Chee Wai, representing the landowner, Tan Jiak Chye, told reporters that judge Mohd Sofian Abd Razak made the decision in his chambers today.

“There is no objection to our application. So, the court agrees to transfer this case because all the matters involved are in Penang.

“The case will be jointly heard with another civil suit filed by my client against 1MDB at the Penang High Court, prior to the filing of this suit,” Foo said, adding that both cases were fixed for case management on Aug 1.

1MDB filed the suit on April 30, naming Tan, 64, as the sole defendant.

According to the statement of claim, 1MDB was in the process of acquiring the undivided shares or interest in various parcels of land located around Air Itam town covering an area of about 234.7 acres.

1MDB claimed a letter dated May 3, 2013 was sent to Tan proposing to exchange the undivided shares or interest in the land in Air Itam with him.

It claimed that Tan accepted the proposal contained in the letter and was paid RM6 million pursuant to the agreement by 1MDB the same day.

However, it claimed that Tan failed, refused and/or neglected to perform his obligations under the agreement to exchange or procure the agreement of the other holders to exchange the land with 1MDB or its subsidiary.

1MDB contended that under the agreement, Tan is obliged and liable to return the RM6 million to the company as the exchange of land had failed to take place.