KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17 — The High Court here has deferred the scheduled dates for former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) trial set for this week to March 2.
This follows an application by the defence, led by lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, to postpone the trial, which was previously fixed for Feb 18 and 21, as he has to attend his son’s wedding in Penang.
Deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib, when contacted by Bernama, said that Justice Collin Lawrence Sequerah allowed Muhammad Shafee’s application to adjourn the trial when the matter was brought up in chambers today.
“The next trial date will be on March 2,” said Ahmad Akram.
Muhammad Shafee's son, Muhammad Farhan, who is also a practising lawyer and part of Najib’s defence team, has his wedding set for this Thursday, Feb 20.
Earlier, during Najib’s SRC International Sdn Bhd trial before Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali, Muhammad Shafee informed the court that he would seek a postponement of the 1MDB trial before Justice Sequerah.
“I did not know that I would be involved in the wedding preparations. It has something to do with Penang Malay culture, tarian semarak. Luckily I am not the one to perform," said Muhammad Shafee jokingly.
The rest of the dates for the trial remain as previously fixed by Justice Sequerah — March 2-6, 9-13, 19-20, 23-27, 30-31, the whole of April, May 4 and the whole week days of June until October, including Fridays until 12.30 pm.
Muhammad Shafee was to have continued with the defence cross-examination of former chief executive officer of 1MDB Datuk Shahrol Azral Ibrahim Halmi, the ninth prosecution witness, who has been on the stand from Sept 23 last year.
Najib, 67, faces four charges of using his position to obtain bribes totalling RM2.3 billion from 1MDB funds and 21 charges of money laundering involving the same amount. — Bernama