Malaysia's ex-transport minister acquitted from cheating charges

KUALA LUMPUR - Former transport minister Tan Sri Chan Kong Choy has been acquitted from three charges of cheating former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi over a Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) project in 2011, by a High Court here today after the prosecution withdrew all charges.

The charges were withdrawn after the Attorney-General's Chambers reviewed a letter of representation filed by defence counsel Datuk Tan Hock Chuan.

The verdict was delivered by judge Datuk Zamani A. Rahim in his chambers.

Speaking to reporters outside the courtroom, Tan said Zamani ruled that the case was withdrawn based on the letter of representation and after considering testimonies in a similar PKFZ case.

On Feb 28, 2011, Chan, 58, was charged with three counts of cheating former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi over the PKFZ project.

He was alleged to have concealed material facts from Abdullah, to make a decision over projects worth RM1.85 billion (S$715 million) in Pulau Indah and PKFZ.

Another former transport minister, Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik, who was acquitted of cheating the government over projects in PKFZ, was acquitted on Oct 25 last year.

Dr Ling, 70, was charged with failure to disclose the interest imposed on 404.4ha of land acquired for the PKFZ in Pulau Indah.

Deputy public prosecutor Datuk Nordin Hassan appeared for the prosecution.