No-nonsense Judge Nazlan in the news again

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High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali is gaining a reputation as the no-nonsense judge who cracks down even on big names in corruption cases.

He has done it again with former Felda chairman Isa Samad who was sentenced to six years in prison and fined RM15 million today after being convicted on nine counts of corruption involving RM3.09 million over the authority’s purchase of a hotel in Kuching seven years ago.

Nazlan convicted Isa, 71, Negeri Sembilan’s longest-serving menteri besar (1982-2004) after ruling that the defence had failed to cast reasonable doubt on the prosecution’s case.

This is not Nazlan’s first big case, though. He also handled former prime minister Najib Razak’s SRC International trial which ended last September.

Then, Nazlan convicted Najib on seven counts of corruption in relation to RM42 million belonging to SRC International.

Najib, who is appealing the conviction, was sentenced to 12 years’ jail and fined RM210 million for abuse of power and 10 years on each of the three counts of criminal breach of trust and money laundering.

But it has not been all convictions. He had earlier acquitted Isa on a criminal breach of trust charge. Nazlan also presided over former federal territories minister Tengku Adnan Mansor’s RM1 million corruption case.

In that case, he granted Tengku Adnan a discharge not amounting to an acquittal.

Nazlan has recently been transferred back to the civil court from the Criminal High Court but it has been reported that he will continue to hear the ongoing criminal cases before him.

These include several high profiles cases, namely a criminal breach of trust case involving Najib and former Treasury secretary-general Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah and Putrajaya’s forfeiture suit to recover over US$340 million of 1MDB money from PetroSaudi International and its director Tarek Obaid. – FMT