KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 11 — Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, who is accused of tax evasion and laundering some RM7 million, has filed an application in court for the recusal of Justice Mohamed Zaini Mazlan from trying this case.
Rosmah’s lawyer Datuk Geethan Ram Vincent confirmed the court filing when contacted by Malay Mail today.
In her application filed on November 2 sighted by Malay Mail, Rosmah claimed that there was a risk that Mohamed Zaini would be prejudiced against her.
The 69-year-old wife of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak pointed out that Mohamed Zaini is also the trial judge in her ongoing corruption case in relation to a RM1.25 billion hybrid solar project for rural schools in Sarawak.
In the affidavit, Rosmah also said her right to a fair trial were protected under the Federal Constitution.
“Yang Arif Mohamed Zaini has ruled that a prima facie case has been established and the applicant was called to her defence for the Solar case and the case has been fixed for trial on December 8.
“Yang Arif has also in the Solar trial allowed the prosecution to cross examine the applicant through the cautioned statement recorded in relation to the money laundering case.
“The exhibits and statements tendered in court during the Solar case can directly or indirectly influence Yang Arif Mohamed Zaini if Yang Arif presides over this case,” Rosmah said in her application.
Case management for the recusal application is scheduled to be heard today.
The trial dates for Rosmah’s money laundering and tax evasion trial — which have yet to start — were previously fixed on December 14, January 10 to 13 and January 24 to 27.
Rosmah is facing 12 money laundering charges involving RM7,097,750 and five counts for failing to declare her income to the Inland Revenue Board.
The offences were allegedly committed at Affin Bank Berhad, Bangunan Getah Asli branch, ground Floor, 148 Jalan Ampang here between Dec 4, 2013 and June 8, 2017 and the Inland Revenue Board, Kompleks Bangunan Kerajaan, Jalan Tuanku Abdul Halim here between May 1, 2014 and May 1, 2018.
The charges on money laundering were framed under Section 4(1) (a) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 and punishable under Section 4(1) of the same law, which provides for imprisonment of up to 15 years and fine of not less than five times the sum or value of the proceeds of unlawful activity or RM5 million, whichever is higher, on conviction.
The charges for tax evasion, made under Section 77(1) of the Income Tax Act 1967, said she failed to furnish returns of her income for the assessment years 2013 to 2017 to the IRB director-general on or before April 30, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 without reasonable excuse contrary to Section 112 of the law.
In the Sarawak schools case, Rosmah is facing a charge of soliciting RM187.5 million and two charges of receiving bribes totalling RM6.5 million from Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd managing director Saidi Abang Samsudin through her former assistant Datuk Rizal Mansor.
The money is alleged to be reward for helping Jepak Holdings secure a RM1.25 billion government contract to equip 369 schools in rural Sarawak with solar hybrid power.