Najib-Arul Kanda’s 1MDB audit report trial to resume next year

Former 1MDB CEO Arul Kanda Kandasamy is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court November 28, 2019. — Picture by Firdaus Latif
Former 1MDB CEO Arul Kanda Kandasamy is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court November 28, 2019. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 28 — Hearings for Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s third trial linked to the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal on all the scheduled dates this year have been completed, and will continue on the next available dates next year.

In this trial, Najib is jointly tried together with former 1MDB CEO Arul Kanda Kandasamy over the alleged tampering of the Auditor-General’s final 1MDB audit report before the report was presented to parliamentary watchdog Public Accounts Committee (PAC).

“That ends our proceedings for this year, I will see everyone in the year 2020,” High Court judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan said at the end of today’s court proceedings.

The Najib-Arul Kanda joint trial had started on November 18, with six prosecution witnesses called so far to testify including former chief secretary to the government Tan Sri Ali Hamsa and former auditor-general Tan Sri Ambrin Buang.

Today is the sixth day of the trial.

Datuk Seri Najib Razak is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court November 28, 2019. — Picture by Firdaus Latif
Datuk Seri Najib Razak is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court November 28, 2019. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

There are no more scheduled dates this year for this trial, as the rest of the year has been allocated for Najib’s other trial.

The next hearing dates previously allocated for this trial are from January 13 to January 16, 2020, with Zaini also fixing additional days from March 9 to March 11, April 6 to April 9, April 13 to April 16 as tentative hearing days.

Zaini also fixed January 9 as mention date for lawyers to update the court on whether the trial can continue on the previously fixed dates amid potential clashes with the schedules for other cases.

Coming up next month is the defence stage of Najib’s separate trial over RM42 million of former 1MDB subsidiary SRC International Sdn Bhd, with trial dates listed December 3 to 4, December 9 to 12 and December 16 to 19.

Najib is expected to be the first defence witness on December 3.

As for Najib’s separate trial over the 1MDB scandal itself, it is scheduled to resume on January 6.

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