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Chairman of Education Ministry-owned firm claims trial to three counts of CBT charges of more than RM178,000

January 13, 2020

* Man pleads not guilty to using foundation’s funds for cigars, oven for wife 

Education Malaysia Global Service chairman Datuk Abdul Rahman Mohamed Shariff is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court Complex January 13, 2020. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 13 — Education Malaysia Global Service (EMGS) chairman Datuk Abdul Rahman Mohamed Shariff today claimed trial in the Sessions Court to three counts of criminal breach of trust (CBT), involving more than RM178,000.

Abdul Rahman, 63, made the plea after the charges were read to him before Sessions Court judge Azura Alwi.

He was accused of committing all three offences at the Maybank Islamic Berhad Taman Melawati bank branch, Jalan Negara 2, Taman Melawati, Kuala Lumpur here between November 2018 and January 2019.

On the first charge, Abdul Rahman, in his capacity as Yayasan Pengurusan Ilmu (YPI) board of director and was entrusted with YPI funds, was alleged to have misappropriated the fund by approving payment of RM150,000 through a cheque issued by Maybank Islamic Berhad to Mudra Resources Sdn Bhd that was owned by him on November 23, 2018.

On the second charge, Abdul Rahman in the same capacity was alleged to have misappropriated YPI funds by approving payment of RM3,049 through a cheque issued by Maybank Islamic Berhad to another account for the purchase of two boxes of cigars — Montecristo Edmundo and Romeo y Julieta Wide Churchill — on December 24, 2018.

On the third charge, Abdul Rahman in the same capacity was alleged to have misappropriated YPI funds by approving payment of RM25,000 through cheques issued to AK Success Sdn Bhd on behalf of Coffee Sandwich Revival Sdn Bhd, which was owned by his wife, on January 7, 2019.

The payment was for the purchase of a Rational Combi Oven & Ultravent plus Exhaust Hood.

All the charges were framed under Section 409 of the Penal Code which provides an imprisonment for up to 20 years and whipping, and is also liable to a fine if found guilty.

Lawyer Afifudin Ahmad Hafifi and Datuk Salehuddin Saidin represented Abdul Rahman.

Deputy public prosecutor Farah Yasmin Salleh asked the court to set bail at RM120,000 and for the accused to surrender his passport to the court.

Salehuddin, however, objected to the latter, arguing his client was a frequent traveller as he has a business in the United Kingdom.

Azura later allowed the accused to be released on a RM100,000 bail with one surety.

Abdul Rahman is also ordered to report himself to the Kuala Lumpur Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) office monthly, from next month, until the trial concludes.

The court fixed February 13 for mention.

According to government division Education Malaysia Division (BEM)’s official website, EMGS manages the Education Ministry’s overseas presence including matters such as promoting Malaysian education and education diplomacy and pushing for Malaysia’s education sector to have international collaborations in academic and research areas.

Established in April 2012, EMGS was to complement BEM’s role in promoting Malaysia as a destination for education among international students and functioned as the main body managing the movement of international students in Malaysia including by facilitating the processing of their visas and has a one-stop centre in Kuala Lumpur for such matters.

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