KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 7 — Putrajaya must explain Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s letter to the US allegedly backing suspected gambling kingpin Paul Phua as it affects the integrity of the entire Cabinet, PAS said today.
PAS information chief Datuk Mahfuz Omar pointed out that Zahid’s letter to the US’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) was reportedly withdrawn as evidence in Phua’s illegal gambling trial in Las Vegas after Putrajaya objected to it being made public.
“Surely the public worries as it seems the government was in cahoots to protect not only a ‘gambling king’ but a member of the 14K triad linked with drugs,” said Mahfuz in a statement.
PAS also demanded that Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar brief the public on Phua’s case, saying the police was likely in contact with the FBI.
The IGP has kept silent over claims made by Phua’s lawyer Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah that the police have cleared his client over the latter’s involvement with a fearsome Hong Kong-based triad called the 14K triad.
DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang and the party’s Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo have similarly urged the government to explain Zahid’s letter to the FBI dated December 18, 2014.
According to Shafee, the letter was a response to a request for information about Phua’s alleged involvement with the 14K triad, which the home ministry said was untrue because there was no such triad in Malaysia.
The letter in question surfaced at the trial of the former Macau junket operator, whose full name is Paul Phua Wei Seng, who is facing illegal gambling charges in the US for taking bets during the World Cup last summer.
The letter reportedly stated that Phua has, on numerous occasions, assisted the Malaysian government on projects affecting national security.