KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 6 — Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) trial at the High Court here today has been postponed to Oct 11 as his lead defence counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah was taken ill.

Another lawyer for Najib, Alaistair Brandah Norman told presiding Judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah that Muhammad Shafee has contracted fever as well as severe throat infection which caused him to unable to address the court today.

“We have to inform that Tan Sri (Muhammad Shafee) has taken ill this morning and was given a medical leave for four days, starting today until Oct 9. He was unable to attend the Court of Appeal matter this morning. 

“For 1MDB trial arrangement next week on Oct 11, we asked for a case management to be fixed at 2.30 pm as Tan Sri have been instructed to attend another appeal case before Judicial Commissioner Datuk Azhar Abdul Hamid…he is required to submit on six grounds for a case that has been going on since 1999 and would not be able to come for the morning trial session,” he said.

The lawyer also requested for the trial scheduled on Oct 12 to start later in the day as Muhammad Shafee will be in another High Court with Judge Datuk Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid for Najib’s judicial review hearing to challenge the Prisons Department’s decision for disallowing the former premier request to attend the Dewan Rakyat sitting.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Mohamad Mustaffa P Kunyalam said they have no objection to today’s postponement, however requested for previous witnesses, AmBank Private Banking Capital Market Head Desk Yap Wai Keat and former AmBank non-executive director Cheah Tek Kuang who have yet to be cross-examined and re-examined be disposed of before calling another witness in the trial.

At this juncture, Judge Sequerah said these witnesses will be kept hanging if this proceeds and asked for the prosecution to arrange for a new witness to ensure there is a continued flow of the trial.

“This (1MDB) case has been delayed for so long. We can’t be waiting for this court and that court, we also have a commitment to finish this trial. Please ensure the new witnesses are available on that day (11 and 12 Oct),” said the judge.

The 1MDB trial today is supposed to continue with the remaining cross-examination of Cheah, who is the 39th prosecution witness by Muhammad Shafee.

Najib, 69, is facing four charges of using his position to obtain bribes totalling RM2.3 billion from 1MDB funds and 21 charges of money laundering involving the same amount.


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