KUALA LUMPUR, July 28 ― Datuk Seri Najib Razak has been sentenced to imprisonment and a fine by the High Court today after he was found guilty of abuse of power and misappropriating RM42 million from SRC International Sdn Bhd.
High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali, in handing down the punishment, said he had taken into consideration all of the mitigation arguments submitted by the defence and the prosecution, including public interest and that of the accused.
“I have considered the provisions in the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission Act , the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act (AMLATFPUAA) and the Penal Code.
“In my judgment, the appropriate and proportionate sentence to the convictions is as follows:
“For the charge under Section 23 of the MACC Act, a jail term of 12 years and a minimum fine under the law which is five times of the gratification amount of RM210 million.
“For the criminal breach of trust, a jail term of 10 years each.
“For the AMLA offence, a jail term of 10 years each,” he said in delivering his judgement.
But this does not mean that Najib will have to serve a total of 72 years in jail, as Mohd Nazlan said the jail sentences will run concurrently, or at the same time.
Should Najib fail to pay the fine, Mohd Nazlan also imposed an additional five years imprisonment in default.
The 67-year-old Najib was exempted from whipping due to his age. No fines were imposed for the money laundering charges.
In meting out the sentence, Mohd Nazlan said he weighed Najib’s contribution to the country and its economic growth against the fact that the offences were committed in Najib’s capacity as a prime minister at the material time.
He said the sentencing trend must also reflect the key policies of deterrence and retribution.
Earlier today, the former prime minister was found guilty of all seven charges of misappropriating RM42 million from SRC International Sdn Bhd by the High Court.
The conviction could also mean an end to Najib’s political career in Malaysia, as it jeopardises his chances of participating in the next election and his disqualification as an elected representative.
The SRC International trial is one of five criminal trials that involved him.
Najib’s seven charges
Najib was accused of committing three counts of criminal breach of trust over a total RM42 million of SRC International funds while entrusted with its control as the prime minister and finance minister then, and a separate charge of abusing the same positions for self-gratification of the same sum.
He was also accused of three counts of laundering RM42 million.
For abuse of power under Section 23 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Act 2009, a person convicted faces a maximum of 20 years’ imprisonment and a minimum fine of RM10,000 or up to five times the sum or value of the bribe, whichever is higher.
Criminal breach of trust under Section 409 of the Penal Code carries a penalty of a minimum of two years’ and a maximum 20 years’ imprisonment, whipping and fine.
The money laundering charges were made under Section 4 of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001, punishable with a maximum 15 years’ jail term and a fine of up to five times the amount of money laundered, or RM5 million, whichever is higher.