Najib applying to disqualify Thomas from heading prosecution team

Najib applying to disqualify Thomas from heading prosecution team
PHOTO: The Star/Asia News Network

PETALING JAYA - Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak will be making a formal application to the High Court to disqualify Attorney General Tommy Thomas from heading the prosecution team in his case.

Najib's lead lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah said the filing will be done in a fortnight.

"We want to complete our research first and gather all the material we need. We will compile all the statements that he had issued about my client prior to the charging (on Wednesday)," Shafee told The Star yesterday.

He added that his team would need time to dig up all the necessary material and file the application once they are ready.

On Wednesday, Najib was charged with three counts of criminal breach of trust and one count of using his position for gratification as part of a probe into money missing from state fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB). He pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The charges are related to the RM42mil that allegedly went from SRC International, a former 1MDB unit, into Najib's personal bank accounts.

The former prime minister's trial was initially thought to begin on Feb 8, 2019, while case management is scheduled for Aug 8.

However, in a statement issued yesterday, the Attorney General's Chambers (AGC) clarified that the trial dates had yet to be fixed and would only be fixed after Aug 8, most likely in November.

It added that the dates reported by the media were the trial judge's "possible free dates for trial".

Former Malaysia PM Najib charged with corruption

  • Open gallery

    Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is expected to face several charges for committing offences under two Acts, sources said.

  • Open gallery

    "We believe Najib will be charged under the Anti Money-Laundering Act and the Penal Code," a source told The Star yesterday.

  • Open gallery

    Other sources said Najib is expected to face four counts of committing criminal breach of trust and anti-money laundering charges involving a total of RM42mil and believed to be linked to the SRC International Sdn Bhd case.

  • Open gallery

    Yesterday, Najib was arrested at his house in Jalan Lang­gak Duta in Kuala Lumpur at about 3pm and was whisked to the MACC headquarters in Putrajaya about an hour later.

  • Open gallery
  • Open gallery
  • Open gallery
  • Open gallery

    Supporters of former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak hold up signs, ahead of his arrival to court in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

  • Open gallery
  • Open gallery

    Rosmah Mansor, wife of Malaysia's former Prime Minister Najib Razak, leaves a courtroom in Kuala Lumpur.

  • Open gallery

    Family members of Malaysia's former Prime Minister Najib Razak leave a court in Kuala Lumpur

  • Open gallery
  • Open gallery

    Malaysia's Attorney-General Tommy Thomas speaks during a news conference outside a courtroom in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

  • Open gallery

    A supporter of Malaysia's former Prime Minister Najib Razak conflicts with a police officer outside a court in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

  • Open gallery

In response to the issue of disqualification, Thomas had said on Wednesday that he would wait for the disqualification application to be filed by the defence, and did not provide any further comment.

He had earlier claimed that the prosecution had a strong case against Najib in relation to his involvement in SRC International.

"We reached the conclusion that we have a strong prima facie case, but accept the burden of proof is on us and that the accused is innocent until proven guilty," he said after Najib was charged.

Apart from seeking to disqualify Thomas, Shafee had also requested a gag order relating to the SRC International case to stop any prejudicial statements in the media and on social media.

The AGC had reiterated in the statement yesterday that it would oppose the application on Aug 8.

Also read: Najib's supporters to launch fund to help him pay for his $337,000 bail

Also read: It'll be a long, long trial for ex-premier Najib

Also read: Attorney general on Najib corruption trial: Can we have this in English, please?

More about

Najib Razak 1MDB
Your daily good stuff - AsiaOne stories delivered straight to your inbox
By signing up, you agree to our Privacy policy and Terms and Conditions.