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Rosmah Mansor’s corruption trial vacated as lawyer falls sick

06 Aug 2020 / 11:42 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court here today vacated Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor’s (pix) corruption trial in connection with the supply and installation of solar energy at 369 rural schools in Sarawak as her defence counsel, who is tasked to cross-examine a prosecution witness, is unwell.

In a short proceeding, lawyer Azrul Zulkifli Stork told the presiding judge, Mohamed Zaini Mazlan, that he had a fall last night and his condition was worsening.

“I had a fall in my condo last night. My condition is worsening and I need to apply for the court to vacate today’s trial as I need to visit the doctor,“ he said.

Azrul is tasked to cross-examine the 17th prosecution witness, Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd managing director Saidi Abang Samsudin, 61, today.

Senior deputy public prosecutor Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram, who is a former Federal Court judge did not object to the defence’s application.

“Well, he’s not well, counsel’s words are like gold, no objection to vacate,“ he said.

Justice Mohamed Zaini, in allowing the trial to be vacated, said the proceedings will resume on Aug 7.

Rosmah, 69, clad in yellow baju kurung and scarf, was present in the courtroom.

Lead defence counsel, Datuk Jagjit Singh, when met by reporters later said that the defence will take about two days to cross-examine Saidi as he is the key witness in the trial.

The wife of former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak is facing one charge of soliciting RM187.5 million and two counts of receiving bribes totalling RM6.5 million from Saidi.

The bribes were allegedly received through her former aide, Datuk Rizal Mansor, as a reward for helping Jepak Holdings secure the Hybrid Photovoltaic Solar System Integrated Project, as well as the maintenance and operation of diesel gen-sets, for 369 Sarawak rural schools worth RM1.25 billion from the Education Ministry through direct negotiation.

The acts were allegedly committed at Lygon Cafe, Sunway Putra Mall, Jalan Putra here; Rosmah’s residence at Jalan Langgak Duta, Taman Duta and at Seri Perdana, Persiaran Seri Perdana, Precinct 10, Putrajaya between January 2016 and Sept 2017.

Rosmah was charged under Section 16(a)(A) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act (MACC), and faced an imprisonment for up to 20 years and fine of not less than five times the amount of the gratification or RM10,000, whichever is higher, upon conviction. — Bernama

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