14 March 2019
High Court to hear 1MDB audit tampering case
The Kuala Lumpur High Court has ruled that it will hear the trial against former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak and 1MDB president Arul Kanda Kandasamy’s for allegedly tampering with an audit report on the company.
Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali allowed the prosecution to transfer the case from the Sessions Court during pre-trial proceedings. Lawyers for the accused did not object to the prosecution’s request.
Najib and Arul were initially charged separately on Dec 12 last year.
Najib was charged with receiving gratification in the form of protection from ethical, civil or criminal actions against him as a public officer in relation to 1MDB, by ordering the alteration of the draft audit report before it was presented to the Public Accounts Committee.
The offence was allegedly committed by Najib between Feb 22 and 26, 2016, at the Prime Minister’s Department in Putrajaya.
Arul, meanwhile, was charged with abetting Najib in the offence, on the same day and time.
Both will be tried together over the alleged tampering after the Sessions Court judge Azura Alwi, on Jan 4, granted the prosecution’s request to have a joint trial.
The charging of the former Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and former 1MDB Chief Executive Officer Arul Kanda Kandasamy with tampering of the Auditor-General’s 1MDB report in 2016 has highlighted the role of the PAS leadership in aiding and abetting the 1MDB corruption and money-laundering scandal.
In April 2017, the PAS Central Working Committee publcily gave approval to the 1MDB CEO Arul Kanda who briefed it for more than two hours about the 1MDB.