Parties in govt’s bid to stop any dealings over PSI monies negotiating settlement

10 Nov 2020 / 14:54 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: Parties involved in the government’s prohibition application to restrain any dealings of the monies amounting to US$340,258,246.87 (RM1,402,884,751.85) belonging to PetroSaudi International Limited (PSI) and PetroSaudi Oil Services (Venezuela) Limited (PSOS-VZ) are in the process of negotiating a settlement.

This was confirmed by High Court deputy registrar Mahyudin Mohmad Som when contacted today.

He said the lawyer representing PSOS-VZ, who is the third respondent in the case, had written to the court to request for an adjournment following to the current situation on Covid-19 as well as the parties involved required more time for settlement negotiations.

He said the parties had also given assurance that the temporary order previously issued by the court preventing any movement of the monies would be abided by.

“The prosecution did not object to the postponement’s application and parties have confirmed that the interim order to freeze the movement of the funds is still binding and effective.

“In view of parties need more time to negotiate and their confirmation of the subsistence of the interim order and coincidentally, with the extension of the CMCO, the application for an adjournment of the hearing was allowed,” he said.

Mahyudin added that the court had fixed Dec 14 for case management to set a new hearing date. The government’s application was supposed to be heard today before High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali.

On July 16, Justice Mohd Nazlan granted the government’s application for an interim order to block PSI, its director Tarek Obaid and its subsidiary, PSOS-VZ from moving the monies linked to 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and kept in a client’s account at the United Kingdom-based law firm, to other entities.

The interim order is to maintain the status quo of parties until the disposal of the government’s prohibition application seeking an order to restrain any dealings of the monies belonging to PSI and PSOS-VZ which are currently in an escrow account held by Clyde & Co LLP in the UK.

Besides the US$340,258,246.87, the government, in its application is also seeking unspecified money that was deposited under an intermediate account name, Temple Fiduciary Services Limited, at Barclays Bank in the UK.

The application, filed under Section 53 of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act (AMLATFPUAA), named Tarek, PSI, PSOS-VZ, Clyde & Co and Temple Fiduciary as the first to fifth respondents.

On Aug 19, Justice Mohd Nazlan allowed PSOS-VZ to access US$1.357 million (RM5,594 million) out of the US$340,258,246.87 after allowing the company’s application to amend the interim order which prohibited it from moving the monies to other entities.

PSOS-VZ sought to vary the terms of the interim order for part of the monies to be released to pay for business expenses and legal costs.

The US$1.357 million is to be paid to UK-based law firm Kerman & Co following the conclusion of the arbitration by the company. — Bernama

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