Ex-AG Thomas, Malaysian govt apply to strike out Najib’s suit against them for power abuse

Tan Sri Tommy Thomas and the government, through a notice of application to quash the suit, which was filed yesterday, among others stated that if Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s suit is continued and tried, it will disrupt the trial in the Criminal High Court of the criminal case against him. — Picture by Hari Anggara
Tan Sri Tommy Thomas and the government, through a notice of application to quash the suit, which was filed yesterday, among others stated that if Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s suit is continued and tried, it will disrupt the trial in the Criminal High Court of the criminal case against him. — Picture by Hari Anggara

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KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 19 — Former Attorney-General Tan Sri Tommy Thomas and the Malaysian government have applied to quash a suit filed by former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak against them for power abuse in prosecuting him in several cases, including the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) case.

They claimed that Najib’s action in suing them was a collateral attack to prevent criminal proceedings against him.

Najib filed the suit last October 22 last year and is seeking more than RM1.9 million in damages.

Thomas and the government, through a notice of application to quash the suit, which was filed yesterday, among others stated that if Najib’s suit is continued and tried, it will disrupt the trial in the Criminal High Court of the criminal case against him.

Deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib, in a supporting affidavit filed with the notice of the application, stated that, in any case, the prosecution could present evidence and proof on allegations of misconduct, malicious abuse of process by Najib in the criminal trial against him.

Citing Article 145 of the Federal Constitution and subsection 376 (1) of the Criminal Procedure Code, Ahmad Akram said the Attorney General,  as the Public Prosecutor, has the power to exercise at his discretion,  to initiate, conduct or discontinue any proceedings for a criminal offence.

He said Najib’s action in filing the suit was an attempt to prevent the public prosecutor from carrying out his duties under the Federal Constitution.

“All this clearly makes the plaintiff’s action an indefensible action in court and the plaintiff failed to submit sufficient facts and details on alleged misconduct in public office, abuse of process and negligence.

“The cause of action for abuse of process is not a cause of action recognised by law. Therefore, the plaintiff’s action is an embarrassment, frivolous, inconvenience and an abuse of the court process,” he said.

Meanwhile, lawyer Yudistra Darma Dorai, representing Najib, said during the online  case management before High Court Deputy Registrar Nurliana Ismail today, the court set January 19 for further case management.

In the statement of claim, Najib claimed that he had been wrongly accused in court in the case of 1MDB, International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC), abuse of power under the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009 and money laundering under the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (AMLATFPUAA 2001).

The Pekan MP claimed that the charges against him were part of a move that had been planned in advance by Thomas and it was also in line with the Pakatan Harapan government’s plan at the time.

Najib claimed that in 2015, Thomas had met Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to discuss wrongdoings and mismanagement allegedly over the 1MDB funds and also advised Dr Mahathir to take civil and criminal action against Najib over his involvement in 1MDB.

He is seeking RM1.9 million in damages and a declaration that Thomas had committed misfeasance in public office, including consultation fees for the audit team to review documentation for preparation of facts to address prosecution against him. — Bernama

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