The High Court in Kuala Lumpur today dismissed Rosmah Mansor’s application to stay the trial of a lawsuit filed by a Lebanese jewellery firm seeking the return of 44 pieces of jewellery worth US$14.8 million (RM60 million), which it alleges was sent to the former prime minister’s wife for viewing.
Justice Wong Chee Lin ordered Rosmah to pay RM3,000 in costs to the firm.
Earlier, lawyer Mohamed Reza Rahim, representing Rosmah submitted they were waiting for the government’s appeal at the Court of Appeal against the court’s decision to allow Rosmah to appoint an independent jewellery expert to identify and verify the number of jewellery pieces currently in the custody of Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM).
“However, we are ready, able and prepared to proceed with the trial,” he said.
David Gurupatham, acting for Global Royalty Trading SAL, said the trial was supposed to proceed today because owner Samir Halimeh was ready to take the stand.
In its suit, Global Royalty alleged on February 10, 2018, it sent 44 pieces of jewellery, including diamond necklaces, earrings, rings, bracelets and tiaras, each worth between US$124,000 and US$925,000 to the defendant, hand-delivered via two of its agents.
The company said Rosmah had acknowledged receipt of the items and agreed to the terms and conditions contained in Memorandum No. 926 pertaining to the jewellery.
The company claimed that Rosmah, via a letter dated May 22, 2018, also confirmed and acknowledged the receipt of the jewellery but stated that all the jewellery was no longer in her possession because it was seized and placed under the custody of the Malaysian authorities.
Global Royalty has applied for the court to declare it as the legal owner of all the jewellery items and that ownership had never been transferred to the defendant.
It is also seeking a mandatory order for Rosmah to provide a list of the jewellery seized, for these to be returned or for Rosmah to pay the price of the jewellery.