KUALA LUMPUR, May 30 — The prosecution’s case against former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak who is charged with the misappropriation of 1Malaysia Development Berhad’s (1MDB) RM2.27 billion has ended after 235 trial days that spanned a period of six years.

Deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib told the High Court today that the prosecution is formally closing its case after the defence completed its cross-examination of the 39th witness, former group managing director of AmBank Cheah Tek Kuang.

“Since there are no more witnesses to be called by the prosecution, no more cross-examinations by the defence and no more re-examinations, Yang Arif, I would like to close the prosecution’s case,” he told judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah, who is presiding over the trial.

Sequerah, who presided over the trial, is also no longer a High Court judge, as he was elevated to the appellate court in January 2023.


The court had also sat on two weekends this year — a first in 1MDB cases — in an effort to wrap up the case.

Najib was initially charged in the Sessions Court on September 20, 2018.

Najib’s 1MDB trial began on August 28, 2019 with the prosecution calling 50 witnesses to the stand.


Some of the notable witnesses included former 1MDB chief executive officer Datuk Shahrol Azral Ibrahim Halmi, former 1MDB chairman Tan Sri Mohd Bakke Salleh, former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz, and once fugitive, former 1MDB general counsel Jasmine Loo Ai Swan.

Akram, who is leading the prosecution team following the demise of the late Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram, said it would offer 49 witnesses to Najib if he was called to enter his defence.

Sequerah also instructed the parties to file their written submissions by July 26, and to put in their replies by August 8.

Oral submissions will be held over four days from August 19 to August 22.

After that, Sequerah will have to rule whether the prosecution has proven a prima facie case, and if so, will call for Najib to enter his defence or grant an acquittal.

In his opening statement, then lead prosecutor Sri Ram, told the court Najib used his position as the prime minister, the finance minister, and the chairman of 1MDB’s board of advisers “to exert influence over the board of 1MDB to carry out certain abnormal transactions with undue haste”.

Sri Ram said the prosecution will, through its evidence, prove that Low Taek Jho, also known as Jho Low, was the mirror image of Najib in all dealings related to 1MDB.

While the prosecution has been producing bankers and multiple bank documents as part of its efforts to prove its case against Najib to show that billions of ringgit had flowed into his accounts, Najib’s lawyers have been trying to put forth the narrative — including through the letters from the purported Saudi prince — that the money were actually donated gifts from Saudi royalty.

In this trial, Najib faces four counts of abuse of power for using his position as the then prime minister, finance minister, and chairman of 1MDB’s board of advisers to receive gratifications worth US$620 million (RM2.27 billion). He also faces 21 money-laundering charges.

Imprisoned since August 23, 2022, Najib is serving his 12-year jail sentence and RM210 million fine for his conviction over the misappropriation of SRC International’s RM42 million funds, which has recently been reduced to six years of jail and RM50 million fine by the Pardons Board.