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IPOH, Jan 26 — A 60-year-old police corporal claimed trial at the Session Court here to 43 charges of accepting bribes totalling RM146,350.
Zubairi Abdul Mutalib pleaded not guilty to all the charges, which were read together with another 43 alternative charges of abuse, in front of judge N. Priscilla Hemamalini.
The charges were read at 2.50pm and took about one hour and forty minutes to complete.
Zubairi, who is a PSC 16 patrol boat machinery chief attached to the Marine Police Base in Kampung Acheh, Sitiawan, was accused of accepting the bribes via Lee Mee Lan’s Ambank account as inducement to not take action against several vessels that allegedly breached the Fisheries Act 1985.
He was accused of committing the offences on separate occasions at the Sitiawan Maybank branch between May 1, 2016 and July 30, 2019.
The primary charges were proffered under Section 17 (a) of the Malaysia Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009, and were each punishable by up to 10 years’ imprisonment, a fine of at least five times the bribe amount or RM10,000, whichever is higher.
The alternative charges were framed under Section 165 of the Penal Code that covered a public servant misusing his position for personal gain, which were each punishable by up to two years’ imprisonment, a fine, or both upon conviction.
MACC deputy public prosecutor Nurul Wahida Jalaludin prosecuted while Zubairi was represented by lawyer Muhamad Aizat Fakri.
Earlier, Nurul Wahida asked the court to set the bail at RM40,000 for all the charges.
“The 43 charges show the seriousness of the case and the bail set should be a lesson to the accused and the public on the offences,” she said.
Nurul also requested for the mention date to be tomorrow as there were still 101 charges pending against the police corporal.
Muhamad Aizat sought for a lower bail amount by saying his client earned just RM4,400 monthly and needed to take care of his family including his 79-year old mother.
“My client has two children aged 30 and 18 and has a wife, who is a housewife.
“I request the court to set the bail at RM5,000 for all the charges as it is difficult for everyone, including my client, to fork out that amount of money in a short period during this pandemic situation,” he said.
Priscilla then set bail at RM25,000 for all the charges and fixed mention for tomorrow.
The case will continue at the MACC court at 9am tomorrow.