Najib-Irwan Serigar RM6.6b CBT trial to start Jan 2020

Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives at the Kuala Lumpur Court Complex, May 14, 2019. ― Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives at the Kuala Lumpur Court Complex, May 14, 2019. ― Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, May 14 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak and former Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah’s joint trial over six criminal breach of trust (CBT) charges involving RM6.64 billion will begin in January next year.

High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali set the dates for the 48 days of the trial this morning, running from January until April.

The trial is known as the International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) trial, which is part of the larger 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal.

Najib’s lawyer, Harvinderjit Singh, along with Irwan’s defence counsel, Datuk K. Kumaraendran, agreed to the dates after taking into consideration the Chinese New Year holidays in January, and Najib’s other joint trial with former 1MDB chief executive Arul Kanda Kandasamy over the tampering of the final federal audit report of the investment firm.

The IPIC trial will commence on January 3 to 6, then continue on January 20 to 23.

Proceedings will take place for the entire month of February, barring all Fridays and weekends, and continue for two weeks in March up to the 12th of the month.

After a two week break to give way to Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah’s own money laundering and tax evasion trial, proceedings for the IPIC case will continue on April 6 and commence all the way through until the end of the month on April 30, except all Fridays and weekends.

Last week, Judge Mohd Nazlan had set December up to February next year as tentative trial dates without confirming actual dates, after initial case management had put the IPIC trial to run from early June.

On October 25 last year, Najib and Irwan pleaded not guilty to the six counts of CBT where they were jointly charged in their capacity as the Finance Minister and the Treasury sec-gen.

On the first count, they were jointly charged in their capacity as finance minister and Treasury secretary-general respectively, and entrusted with the dominion of RM1.2 billion belonging to the Malaysian government, with committing CBT on the fund.

On the second count, Najib and Mohd Irwan were jointly charged with committing CBT of RM655 million belonging to the Malaysian government which was entrusted to them.

On the third count, they were jointly charged, in their capacity as public servants and holding the same post, with committing CBT of RM220 million belonging to the Malaysian government in the Federal Consolidated Fund under the “Belanja Mengurus di bawah Maksud B11 Perkhidmatan Am Perbendaharaan, Aktiviti 021700 KL International Airport Berhad (KLIAB)” that were entrusted to them.

The two men were also jointly accused of committing CBT of RM1.3 billion that were entrusted to them Federal Consolidated Fund under “Maksud B11 Perkhidmatan Am Perbendaharaan, Aktiviti 020500 Subsidi Dan Bantuan Tunai”, belonging to the Government of Malaysia.

On the fifth and sixth charges, they allegedly committed CBT of CNY1,950,000,000 (RM1.26 billion) and RM2 billion, respectively, belonging to the government.