Najib starts move for legal action over WSJ article

Najib starts move for legal action over WSJ article
Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
PHOTO: The Star/Asia News Network

PETALING JAYA - Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak has demanded an explanation from The Wall Street Journal over its July 3 article implicating him of allegedly transferring 1Malaysia Development Bhd funds into his personal accounts.

His legal firm, Hafarizam Wan & Aisha Mubarak, said it was now identifying "facts to proceed with further instructions" by way of the parties involved in the writing, distributing and publishing the article.

This is would be to enable the "service of any legal letter or court documents," it said in a statement on Wednesday.

It said it has instructions to "tackle all possible or plausible legal remedies of which our client shall be given advise on an action of defamation, further tortuous actions and remedies including any statutory violations by WSJ and related companies and (if any) conspirers."

"This is not a straightforward legal action due to the national and international imputations. We have been instructed to identify facts and lay full facts, before our client, is able to proceed with further instructions," it said.

Here is the press release from Hafarizam Wan & Aisha Mubarak:

WSJ PRESS RELEASE

The Wall street Journal had published an article dated 3rd July 2015, implicating our client Datuk Seri Najib.

Immediately, our client had instructed us, Messrs Hafarizam Wan & Aisha Mubarak, to scrutinize the said article.

The article is tainted with numerous allegations against our client which involved several companies and transactions.

Combing through the said article, we have concluded that the language is intentionally or otherwise has made reference to several facts and companies which are vaguely described.

Reference is made to the said article wherein it has been stated that our client had been directly probed into 1MDB, however contents of the article refers to indirect transactions where our client has been implicated with 1MDB-linked companies.

A clear contradiction which requires further clarification.

This article by WSJ was issued, published and circulated through WSJ web portal www.wsj.com.

Firstly, we have been instructed to identify the parties involved in the authorship, distribution and publishing, for the purpose of naming the appropriate parties in any potential actions which requires deliberation and research as the article does not reflect extensive details for service of any legal letter or court documents.

Secondly, another issue of concern is, jurisdictional issues of which the publication originates from United States of America and accessible worldwide.

We have been also instructed that a local presence of WSJ is also available and we are pursuing further clarification and details on this matter.

Since the article involves several parties, we have also been instructed to consider a joint action or an action against, in the event evidence shows a conspiracy against our client.

Kindly note that the companies named as conspirators with our client, in the article are; International Petroleum Investment Co, Tanore Finance Corp, SRC International Sdn. Bhd, and Ihsan Perdana Sdn. Bhd.

Several names of companies or organisations had only been referred to as the related companies or companies belonging to certain organisations or companies, and also the sources or destinations or the alleged transactions has not been disclosed.

This in itself either intentionally or otherwise has caused further identification of facts been required.

Once we have identified the parties, the jurisdiction, and the involvement of conspirators or are they merely parties which also had been innocently imputed in the article, we can then proceed to address the third issue.

The third issue is to tackle all possible or plausible legal remedies of which our client shall be given advise on an action of defamation, further tortuous actions and remedies including any statutory violations by WSJ and related companies and (if any) conspirers.

This is not a straightforward legal action due to the national and international imputations. We have been instructed to identify facts and lay full facts, before our client, is able to proceed with further instructions.

The purpose of clear explanation is to avoid unnecessary objections by WSJ on the imputations that are made.

Once our client has obtained all necessary facts and the position of WSJ is ascertained, we have strict instructions to immediately exhaust legal avenues and remedies.

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