SRC trial: Aussie handwriting expert to arrive week of Feb 10 to analyse Najib’s signatures

Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court on January 23, 2020. — Picture by Miera Zulyana
Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court on January 23, 2020. — Picture by Miera Zulyana

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 23 — The Australian handwriting expert appointed by former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to verify his signatures on several contentious documents tendered as evidence in the SRC International Sdn Bhd trial is set to examine the documents in the week of February 10.

The date was set after defence counsel Harvinderjit Singh informed Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali that the expert could only travel to Malaysia in the week of February 10.

“The week of February 10 is the only arrangement that could be done. I do not foresee much delay on the trial. The examination will take only two days.

“A report is expected to be ready in a week after the analysis,” said the lawyer.

The documents comprised 11 that were marked as prosecution evidence, and another two, marked as defence evidence, which were tendered as evidence during the trial.

Yesterday, Justice Mohd Nazlan allowed Najib’s application to call his own expert on grounds that an accused was entitled to procure and lead any relevant evidence of his choice in his defence.

During the trial, Najib had raised questions on the authenticity of his signatures as he claimed that he was never shown the original copies of the disputed documents.

Previously, the court had set February 3 for the expert to examine the documents.

Earlier, under cross-examination by lead prosecutor Datuk V. Sithambaram, Najib disagreed to a suggestion that the then attorney general, Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali was wrong to clear his (Najib) name from any wrongdoing related to the RM2.6 billion that was transferred into his personal bank account during a press conference held on January 26, 2016.

When asked by Sithambaram whether he intended to call Mohamed Apandi as a witness, Najib said that it was being considered by the defence.

Today is the 10th day of Najib’s defence trial since it started on December 18 last year.

Najib was making his defence on seven charges of misappropriating RM42 million in SRC International Sdn Bhd funds, comprising three counts of criminal breach of trust (CBT), three counts of money laundering and one count of abuse of position in relation to the SRC funds.

The hearing before Justice Mohd Nazlan continues on February 3 with Sithambaram to continue with his cross-examination on Najib.

Before the proceeding ended today, Sithambaram thanked Najib for his cooperation during the course of his cross-examination and wished those celebrating the Chinese New Year a happy celebration. — Bernama

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