Defence rests case in Syed Saddiq’s graft trial

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April 3 the last day to file written submissions.

Hari Anggara

The defence team of Muar MP Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, who is facing four charges of criminal breach of trust, misappropriation of assets and money laundering, closed its case on Tuesday (March 14) after calling four witnesses.

Judge Datuk Azhar Abdul Hamid fixed April 10 and 11 for oral submissions from both parties after lawyer Gobind Singh Deo, representing Syed Saddiq, informed that the defence team is closing its case.

The judge also set April 3 as the last day for the prosecution and defence to file written submissions.

On Oct 28 last year, Syed Saddiq, 30, was ordered to enter his defence on the four charges after the prosecution succeeded in establishing a prima facie case against the accused at the end of the prosecution’s case.

The former youth and sports minister testified in his defence for two days from Feb 22.

Also testifying as defence witnesses were former Armada information chief Ulya Aqamah Husamudin, former special officer to Syed Saddiq, Mohamed Amshar Aziz, and former private secretary to Syed Saddiq, Siti Nurul Hidayah.

Earlier, Siti Nurul Hidayah testified that the police report lodged regarding allegations that she was threatened by Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) officers when called up to testify in the probe against Syed Saddiq in 2020 was true.

According to the fourth defence witness, she also met with a senior MACC official known as Ihsan, who introduced himself as the investigating officer in Syed Saddiq’s case.

In the meantime, Syed Saddiq, who was called back to testify also identified Ihsan, whose real name is Mohd Ihsan Sapuan.

In the previous proceedings, a defence attorney referred Syed Saddiq to a transcript of an audio recording that allegedly contained a conversation between the latter and Ihsan.

In the transcript, Ihsan is said to be trying to persuade Syed Saddiq to support former prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, apart from informing him that the MACC becomes a “tool” whenever there is a change of government.

Syed Saddiq is charged as the then Bersatu Youth wing or Armada chief, with abetting former Armada assistant treasurer Rafiq Hakim Razali, who was entrusted with RM1mil in funds belonging to the wing, to commit a criminal breach of trust by misappropriating the funds at CIMB Bank Bhd, Menara CIMB KL Sentral, Jalan Stesen Sentral 2 here on March 6, 2020.

He is also charged with misappropriating RM120,000 from the Maybank Islamic Bhd account belonging to Armada Bumi Bersatu Enterprise by causing Rafiq Hakim to dispose of the money at Malayan Banking Bhd, Jalan Pandan 3/6A, Taman Pandan Jaya here between April 8 and 21, 2018.

He also faces two counts of money laundering, namely two transactions of RM50,000 each believed to be proceeds from unlawful activities, from his Maybank Islamic Bhd account into his Amanah Saham Bumiputera account at a bank in Jalan Persisiran Perling, Taman Perling, Johor Baru, on June 16 and 19, 2018.