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Court sets RM1 million bail each for Najib, Irwan

October 25, 2018

* Ex-intel chief slapped with CBT charge, RM500,000 bail  

KUALA LUMPUR: The Sessions Court here has set RM1 million bail each for former prime minister Najib Razak and former Treasury secretary-general Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah in their criminal breach of trust (CBT) cases.

Judge Azman Ahmad set the amount after hearing arguments from fiat prosecutor Gopal Sri Ram and lawyers Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, representing Najib, and Dev and Lavania Kumaraendran and their father K Kumaraendran, representing Irwan.

The court also ordered the duo to surrender their passports pending disposal of the case.

“Neither of them are allowed to contact any witnesses related to the case,” Azman added.

Irwan and Najib were told to pay RM500,000 today with the remaining amount to be settled within 10 days. They were allowed two bailors each.

Azman set Nov 29 for the next case mention, with Sri Ram saying the prosecution had no objection to any application to transfer the cases to the High Court.

Both Najib and Irwan claimed trial earlier today when the RM6.6 billion CBT charges were read to them.

Najib, who also faces 32 charges for CBT, money laundering, abuse of power and corruption-related offences, has already posted a total of RM4.5 million bail.

Shafee earlier used this to argue for a lower bail, saying the amount should not be punitive or oppressive. He said the bail amount should not exceed RM500,000, in response to Sri Ram’s proposal that bail be set at RM3 million.

The lawyer also said Najib had cooperated with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission in all investigations, including questioning in 2015 and again this year, and that the former prime minister posed no flight risk.

Noting that Najib’s bank accounts and assets had been frozen, he urged the court to extend the previous RM4.5 million bail to cover the latest CBT charges.

He added that Najib was the first person in Malaysia to pay bail of RM4.5 million.

He said the first and second CBT charges were related to a land acquisition, and that the decision made by Najib and Irwan was in order to re-prioritise funds. The decision, he added, was “for the good of the nation”.

He also said the last three charges were related to International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) payments.

“Again, these funds stated in the charges were initially for a purpose but re-prioritised on the face of urgency for IPIC settlements.

“The executive decision was made in the sole interest of the country. He did not obtain personal benefit from the funds.”

Kumaraendran meanwhile argued that there was no flight risk on Irwan’s part either as he had been under a travel ban since June.

He added that Irwan could not raise the RM3 million proposed by Sri Ram as he was a civil servant, urging the court to set bail at RM500,000 instead.

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