Ex-Sabah Water deputy director to pay RM30m as punishment or face all 146 money laundering charges again

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If payment is not received within 14 days, the charges will be reinstated and Teo will face the full force of the law.

Bernama

Former Sabah Water Department deputy director Teo Chee Kong was today ordered to pay RM30 million as punishment for a high-profile case where he was charged with 146 counts of money laundering.

The order was accompanied by a discharge not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA) from Sessions Court judge Abu Bakar Manat.

Malaysia Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Legal and Prosecuting Division senior director Datuk Faridz Gohim Abdullah said that the prosecuting team has the authority to decide on the offer which was part of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (AMLA).

“This amount is considered a success for the prosecution,” Faridz told reporters at court.

He said the RM30 million fine for the compounded offences is provided for under Section 92 of AMLA, which allows the prosecutor to offer a reasonable fine in its asset recovery effort.

He said the offer does not affect the trial and outcome of the other three accused in the same case, which is still ongoing.

Deputy public prosecutor Mahadi Abdul Jumaat said Teo through his counsel Ram Singh had written a representation letter to the DPP’s office and the representation was accepted.

Teo, 57, was charged in December 2017 with 146 counts of money laundering charges involving RM32.93 million under Section 4 (1) (a) of AMLA.

He would also have his passport be returned upon payment.

If payment is not received within 14 days, the charges will be reinstated and Teo will face the full force of the law.

Teo was accused of various counts of money laundering amounting to RM32.9 million through land titles, cash and bank accounts.

The charges stated that Teo had committed the alleged offences at separate locations at land district offices and bank branches here, in Penampang and Beaufort between 2005 and 2016.

Mahadi said that there has been no development in the cases against the three other accused involved in the Sabah Water Department scandal: the ex-director of Sabah State Water Department Ag Mohd Tahir Mohd Talib; Tahir’s wife Fauziah Ag Piut; and Teo’s successor Lim Lam Beng @ Lim Chee Hong.

Ag Mohd Tahir, Fauziah and Lim are facing money laundering charges involving cash and bank savings amounting to RM61.48 million, as well as unlawful possession of luxury goods.

The trial of the trio would proceed on April 11-14, April 25-27, May 17-19 and June 13-15. – MMO