Court of Appeal decision exonerates trial judge Nazlan

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Decision showed Nazlan had convicted Najib based on cold, hard facts.

The Court of Appeal’s (COA) rejection of Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s appeal today has exonerated the High Court judge who convicted and sentenced the former prime minister in the SRC International case.

Lead prosecutor Datuk V Sithambaram said the decision showed High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali had convicted Najib based on cold, hard facts.

“Now, a total of four judges have found that the charges against Najib were justified.

“Today’s findings completely exonerate Nazlan of any wrongdoing, in the way he dealt with the evidence, in the way he arrived at his decision and the sentence he passed.

Seth Akmal/TMI

“They held that he was totally right in his conclusion and that there was nothing wrong in his judgment.”

Sithambaram noted that Najib’s defence had focussed on Nazlan’s findings and attacked the judge’s credibility, which the prosecution had fought hard to defend.

It was previously reported that Najib’s lawyers had attacked Nazlan’s decision to convict Najib, branding him as biased and hopelessly incompetent.

The former prime minister’s lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah had even gone so far as accusing Nazlan of acting as a second prosecutor in the case.

Sithambaram had then rebuked the defence by saying they had made serious, unfair, and unfounded allegations against Nazlan, who could not respond even though whatever said was totally unjustified.

“Judges are just doing their judicious duty. Unfounded allegations in cases such as this which are of national interest will bring disrepute to the administration of justice.

“People read about this case every day. They will go on thinking that judges are biased…that they are all useless and not qualified to sit. These are all very serious allegations which were uttered without any basis at all,” he was quoted as saying then.

However, the COA today not only reaffirmed Nazlan’s findings of Najib’s guilt but reinforced the High Court judge’s decision to convict the Pekan member of parliament against the charges of abuse of power, criminal breach of trust, and money laundering involving RM42 million of SRC International funds.

A three-member bench led by Judge Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil ruled that there were no flaws in Nazlan’s findings and Najib’s conviction and sentence were upheld.