Ex-director of Blue Valley claims trial to money laundering

Ex-director of Blue Valley claims trial to money laundering
The accused: Pannirselvam at the Sessions Court in Ipoh. He faces a maximum fine of RM5mil or five years’ jail if convicted.

IPOH - A former director of Blue Valley Plantation Bhd claimed trial in the Sessions Court here to eight charges of money laundering and criminal breach of trust involving RM1.04mil.

S. Pannirselvam, as a member of the company's board of directors, had allegedly accepted RM400,000 (S$148,000) from one Kwang Keh Chong at the Ong Keong Huat & Co legal firm in Taman Chateau here on Aug 8, 2007.

He is also charged with depositing three cheques for RM216,600.65 each, belonging to the legal firm, into his account at the Ayer Tawar Public Bank branch on June 27, 2008.

All the charges under Section 4(1)(a) of the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001 state that the funds were obtained from illegal activities.

Pannirselvam faces a maximum fine of RM5mil or five years' jail, or both, if convicted.

The 62-year-old man also pleaded not guilty to committing criminal breach of trust in his capacity as one of the company's board of directors by selling its asset for RM400,000.

He claimed trial as well to three additional charges of having fraudulently misappropriated the three cheques that were allegedly entrusted to him as a company director.

Pannirselvam can be jailed for up to five years and whipped, and possibly fined, if convicted under Section 409 of the Penal Code.

Asking the court to fix a lower bail amount, defence counsel Nicholas Netto said Pannirselvam was declared a bankrupt in 2012.

He said the accused's passport was already impounded so there was no risk of him fleeing the country.

DPP Mohd Asnawi Abu Hanipah had proposed that bail be set at RM200,000.

Judge Rihaida Rafie set bail at RM100,000 in one surety.

The case will come up for mention on June 23.

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