Only Isa Samad received bribe of RM3m, court told

14 Jan 2020 / 22:13 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court was told today that investigations by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) found only former Felda chairman Tan Sri Mohd Isa Abdul Samad received a RM3 million in bribe from former Gegasan Abadi Properties Sdn Bhd (GAPSB) board member Ikhwan Zaidel.

MACC investigating officer Mohamad Safari Abdullah, 37, said Mohd Isa’s former special officer Muhammad Zahid Md Arip, 53, former Felda Investment Corporation Sdn Bhd (FICSB) CEO Mohd Zaid Abdul Jalil, 49, and Ikhwan, 60, were not charged as they did not receive the bribe.

“I do not have to suggest the three names to be charged as there is no conspiracy among them, and investigation found that the money was only received by the accused (Mohd Isa),“ he said during re-examination by deputy public prosecutor Afzainizam Abdul Aziz.

Mohamad Safari said this when questioned the reason he did not recommend for the three of them (referring to Muhammad Zahid, Mohd Zaid and Ikhwan) to be charged as there was sufficient evidence to prosecuted them.

Today is the 15th day of Mohd Isa’s trial for criminal breach of trust and corruption involving more than RM3 million in connection with the purchase of Merdeka Palace Hotel & Suites (MPHS) in Kuching, Sarawak, by FICSB.

The hearing was before Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali.

Mohamad Safari, who is the 22nd witness, told the court that investigations found Muhammad Zahid was not involved in making the decision on the purchase of MPHS, but that he was only the middle-man to collect the bribe money (RM3 million) from Ikhwan.

“Muhammad Zahid, who is the 21st prosecution witness, received the money from Ikhwan for Tan Sri Isa. Handing over of the money (from Muhamamd Zahid to Mohd Isa) was also known to other witnesses.

“Ikhwan was not with Muhammad Zahid when the money was handed over to Tan Sri Isa, but Ikhwan knew that the money had been handed over to Tan Sri Isa,“ he added.

Questioned by Afzainizam, the reason he disagreed with Mohd Isa’s lawyer, Datuk Salehuddin Saidin, that Ikhwan had interest in the bribe money, Mohamad Safari said it was because Ikhwan received dividends from the sale of MPHS.

Earlier, during cross-examination by Salehuddin, Mohamad Safari said he agreed with the counsel’s suggestion that there was no video recording showing Muhammad Zahid handing over the money to Mohd Isa.

He also agreed with agreed with Salehuddin that there was no agreement, document and statements to show that the money had been deposited into anyone’s account.

Mohd Isa, 71, is charged with one count of criminal breach of trust (CBT) and nine counts of receiving bribes of more than RM3 million in connection with the purchase of MPHS by FICSB.

The offences were allegedly committed at the Felda Tower, Platinum Park, No. 11, Persiaran KLCC here, between April 29, 2014 and Dec 15, 2015.

The prosecution closed its case today after 22 witnesses testified. - Bernama

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