Najib’s 1MDB Hearing to Start in August

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Judge warned that there should be no more delays in 1MDB trial.

The hearing for the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) corruption case involving former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and RM2.28bil at the High Court here has been postponed for the second time to give way to the hearing of his SRC International case.

The SRC trial, which is currently in its 12th day, is expected to continue until May 10.

Earlier, Justice Collin Lawrence Sequerah, who is presiding over the 1MDB case, allowed an application by Attorney-General Tommy Thomas to defer the case.

Thomas told the court today that the SRC International trial would not end by next Friday.

“We do not want the SRC International case to be part-heard and left hanging.

“If everything goes well, the prosecution can close our case on June 21, which is also the last date fixed for the 1MDB case,” he said, adding that the SRC International case is one of public interest.

Sequerah said 1MDB is also a public interest case, and that the court had vacated cases that carry the capital punishment in order to hear the 1MDB case.

Appearing slightly irritated by the application, he warned both parties not to delay the case again.

“I am conceding with the public prosecutor’s notice of motion.

“I do not want to see another notice of motion to postpone (the) 1MDB (trial).

“I don’t want to make any more accommodation and vacate the dates again.

“It makes a mockery of the practice,” he said, noting that this was the third time the court was asked to vacate the 1MDB trial dates.

The 1MDB trial was scheduled to run from May 14 to June 21.

“Let’s finish one case at a time,” Thomas said.

“Once the trial begins, it should go on until it is completed.”

Case management has been set for June 21.

The judge ordered for the hearing to take place daily, starting from Aug 19 until Nov 15, with the exception of Fridays.

The High Court’s decision today means Najib’s SRC International trial will now go beyond May 10 and take over the 1MDB trial dates fixed previously.

The SRC International case is being heard by another High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali.

Nazlan had indicated he would have no objections to continue with the SRC International trial on the dates scheduled for the 1MDB trial on condition Sequerah postponed it.

Najib is charged with four counts as a public officer, namely prime minister, finance minister and 1MDB chairman, of using his position to attain gratification for himself.

The Pekan MP also faces 21 allegations of money laundering under the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds from Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (Amla), involving 1MDB funds amounting to RM2.28bil.