Najib’s aide introduced me to Jho Low, says witness

A witness says he was introduced to Jho Low at a London hotel.

KUALA LUMPUR: A witness told the High Court in Najib Razak’s SRC International trial that he was introduced to fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho, or Jho Low, by the former prime minister’s then principal private secretary at a hotel in London, almost 10 years ago.

Rosman Abdullah, who is Putrajaya Perdana Bhd group managing director, said that he had asked Azlin Alias to look out for “business opportunities” for him as he wanted to start his own business after many years of working for other people.

Azlin was Rosman’s secondary school classmate in Sekolah Menengah Sains Tengku Abdullah, Raub, in Pahang. Azlin died in a helicopter crash in April 2015.

Ad-hoc prosecutor V Sithambaram asked Rosman to confirm that Azlin had later told him about a business opportunity where “a Chinese businessman was looking for a Malay partner”.

The witness answered in the affirmative and said that the company involved was Putrajaya Perdana.

“Azlin and I met Jho Low at the Dorchester Hotel, in London,” Rosman said, adding that if not for Azlin, he would not have met Low.

Rosman said Low offered to sell Putrajaya Perdana to him.

“I worked on securing a bank loan for that purpose,” he added.

Rosman then told the court that Low had informed him, through Blackberry Messenger (BBM) on July 8, 2014, that RM35 million would be deposited into Putrajaya Perdana’s subsidiary company (Putra Perdana Construction Sdn Bhd).

However, Rosman said in Putra Perdana Construction’s bank statement, it did not state that the funds came from SRC International.

Sithambaram: Jho Low informed you that the money from SRC was an advance for a contract that he would be signing?

Rosman: Yes.

Rosman added that Low instructed him to transfer RM27 million of the RM35 million into a private account, known as “1MY”, at Ambank and then to inform Low after the transaction was done.

He said this was so that Low could inform his “boss” after the transaction was made.

Sithambaram then asked: “When Jho Low mentioned ‘boss’, did you know at that time that he was referring to Datuk Seri Najib?”

Rosman replied in the affirmative.

He added that Low had also asked him to transfer another RM5 million from Putra Perdana Construction on Sept 10, 2014, to the same Ambank account.

The hearing continues before High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali.

Najib is facing six charges of money laundering and criminal breach of trust in the transfer of RM42 million from SRC International to his personal account.

He is also accused of abusing his power as prime minister by giving government guarantees on SRC International’s RM4 billion loan from Retirement Fund Incorporated (KWAP).