KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 25 — The High Court will decide tomorrow on whether or not it will allow for a stay of proceedings over a lawsuit filed by a Lebanese jeweller against Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor as the police did not comply to a court order on February 14.
Rosmah’s lawyer N. Rajivan told reporters that Judicial Commissioner Wong Chee Lin will hear the explanation from the Federal Police Head of Special Investigation Division of the Anti-Money-Laundering Team Superintendent Foo Wei Min.
“Our reason for the stay, if you remember when we filed for the striking out last year, we said that basically the position is that the police have seized approximately 12,000 pieces of jewellery. But they are still investigating as to whether the 44 pieces are part of the 12,000 pieces.
“In light of that, the trial cannot proceed because our client’s position is that they’ve all been seized. So until the police comes back and gives us an answer as to whether the 44 pieces are with them, this trial cannot proceed.
“We have asked for the application to be stayed and the entire suit to be stayed until May 2019 but today what Yang Arif has done is that she has issued an order to ask Superintendent Foo Wei Min to be present tomorrow at 9 am to ask why the order given on the 14th of February has not been complied with,” Rajivan told reporters at the court complex here outside the courtroom.
He said the authorities had not called in his client to view the jewellery and identify whether or not the 44 pieces of jewellery sent to Rosmah by Lebanese firm Global Royalty Trading SAL in February last year are part of the 12,000 pieces of jewellery seized by the police, as per the court’s order.
He added that it was a complex procedure for the police to investigate and that the seizure will expire in May this year.
Global Royalty’s counsel Datuk G. David on the other hand argued that the trial should go on as it was a straightforward civil case.
“But the court was concerned about the order, the two orders granted for the confirmation of the seizure or otherwise of these 44 pieces,” David said.
At the moment the trial is still set to begin on March 4 2019.
On June 26, 2018, Global Royalty sued Rosmah, demanding that she return 44 jewellery items sent to her for viewing purposes, or to pay the full price of all the items worth US$14.79 million (RM60.21 million).
In its statement of claim, Global Royalty said Rosmah was a long-time regular customer and that it would usually send her jewellery consignments upon her request. Rosmah would then evaluate and purchase the jewellery of her choice with the payment made either by herself or a third party.
The company, which also supplies jewellery to royalty and celebrities from around the world, claimed that unselected jewellery would usually be returned, and, in certain circumstances, Rosmah would borrow the jewellery and return it to them later.
Global Royalty claimed it had sent 44 jewellery items that were hand carried by two agents on February 10, 2018 to Rosmah, including diamond necklaces, earrings, rings, bracelets and tiaras, each worth between US$124,000 and US$925,000.
The company said Rosmah had acknowledged receipt of the items and agreed to the terms and conditions contained in Memorandum No 926 pertaining to the jewellery.
The company claimed that Rosmah in a letter dated May 22, 2018, also confirmed and acknowledged the receipt of the jewellery but stated that they were no longer in her possession but had been seized and placed under the custody of the Malaysian authorities.
Global Royalty has applied for the court to declare it as the legal owner of all the jewellery items and that ownership had never been transferred to the defendant.
Rosmah, in her statement of defence filed on July 23, 2018, denied purchasing any of the jewellery and that the company had willingly sent the items to her for viewing purposes in her capacity as the wife of the then-prime minister, without any obligation to make a purchase.