Najib’s 1MDB Trial to Start Aug 19 as High Court Rejects A-G’s Extension Bid

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The second trial of former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak involving 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) will proceed as scheduled after a High Court on Monday rejected a request to defer the hearing.

High Court Collin Lawrence Sequerah on Monday rejected a June 21 application to defer the 1MDB hearing and ruled that it will proceed on August 19 despite the ongoing SRC International trial.

“I am not willing to wait. If you have nothing to submit, I will make my decision,” Sequerah said.

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“After hearing both parties and taking into account that this is the third application by the prosecution, this application is rejected,” he added.

Sequerah appeared to be upset with the third postponement application.

On June 21, Attorney-General Tommy Thomas had asked for the third time to reschedule the 1MDB hearing on October 1 given the SRC International trial which was unlikely to be completed by August 15, the expected conclusion of the hearing.

Thomas has said that the ongoing trial was “moving more slowly than we expected” and that there were 25 more witnesses called to testify.

He also said that the accused could not be in two courts at the same time.

Thomas added that Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali, who is presiding over the SRC International trial, agreed to vacate further dates to accommodate the SRC International trial from September 3 to 30.

Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, Najib’s lawyer, seconded Thomas’ application, saying that similar applications before the court were approved by Sequerah based on policy, adding that the request was to ensure that SRC International hearing concludes first before the 1MDB case is heard.

Sequerah had previously scheduled Najib’s 1MDB trial on August 19 to 29, throughout September and October except for Fridays, and the first two weeks in November.