KUALA LUMPUR: Former attorney-general Tommy Thomas had insisted that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) prosecute Shahrir Samad even though their investigation papers (IPs) on his case were incomplete, the High Court here was told.
MACC investigating officer Nurzahidah Yacop, 35, said she was instructed by the prosecution, with permission given by Thomas on Jan 15, 2020, to charge the former Felda chairman, although the IPs on the case were still incomplete.
She said this when cross-examined by Shahrir’s lawyer Syed Faisal Syed Abdullah Al-Edros at the trial of the former Johor Bahru MP, who is facing a charge of failing to declare the RM1 million received from former prime minister Najib Razak to the Inland Revenue Board (LHDN).
Earlier, to a question from Syed Faisal, Nurzahidah said she agreed that based on transactions in Shahrir’s bank account book, he used personal funds of over RM2.6 million for political activities before receiving the RM1 million from Najib on Nov 28, 2013.
However, the MACC assistant superintendent admitted that she had never looked into the RM1 million that Shahrir received from Najib even though the Umno man insisted eight times during investigations in 2019 that the money was to replace his pension.
Nurzahidah said she did inform her superiors about it, but she was not instructed to investigate the matter.
Syed Faisal: In your opinion, as an MACC investigating officer, is it fair to my client that an investigation was not conducted on the matter, even though he repeatedly said it was to replace his money?
Nurzahidah: It is not fair to Shahrir, but I never received the document (on the withdrawal of RM2.6 million). My investigation was after the date of receipt of the RM1 million.
When asked by Syed Faisal whether she felt suspicious about her superiors’ actions in not ordering her to probe the matter further, Nurzahidah said yes.
Yesterday, the witness told the court that the RM1 million Shahrir received from Najib was to replace his pension money which was used for political activities in the Johor Bahru parliamentary constituency.
Shahrir, 72, was charged on Jan 21, 2020 with money laundering by not stating his real income in his income tax return form for the assessment year 2013. He received the RM1 million, believed to be from unlawful activities, from Najib through an AmIslamic Bank Berhad cheque, dated Nov 27, 2013.
In doing so, he had violated Section 113(1)(a) of the Income Tax Act 1967.
He was charged with committing the offence at the LHDN office in Jalan Tuanku Abdul Halim here, on April 25, 2014.
The charge, under Section 4(1) of the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001, provides imprisonment for up to five years or a fine of RM5 million, or both, if convicted.
The hearing before justice Jamil Hussin continues on Jan 5.