KUALA LUMPUR: Several prominent Datuks, who were former top executives of a government agency, are expected to be charged in court today with cheating and criminal breach of trust involving millions of ringgit.
Also expected to be charged is the alleged mastermind of a syndicate who had used fake identity cards to make illegal withdrawals amounting to more than RM8mil from the accounts of several Tabung Haji members.
Sources said the authorities had given the green light for at least three of the top executives of the agency to be charged for their alleged involvement in a scam that resulted in the body losing more than RM300mil over several months.
They said the Datuks, who have since left the company and were now working for several private firms, allegedly used public funds to invest in the share market.
Their action caused the agency to suffer huge loses resulting in the Government taking drastic actions, including replacing several of its top executives.
It is learnt that after the reshuffle, the authorities managed to recover part of the money but several more millions still could not be accounted for.
The suspects are expected to be charged under Section 409 (Criminal Breach of Trust by a public servant or banker merchant or agent) and 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) as provided for under the Penal Code.
If convicted, they face a jail term of up to 20 years and are also liable to a fine for the CBT under Section 409 and up to 10 years and a fine for cheating case under Section 420.
As for the Tabung Haji scam, the sources said that the alleged mastermind who was arrested last week in Tanjung Sepat, Banting, Selangor, is expected to be charged with cheating and cheating by impersonating.
It is learnt that the 45-year-old man, who is said to have laundered his ill-gotten gains had invested his money in several businesses, including a chain of restaurants, florists and money lending, and fled the country soon after ripping off the pilgrimage board coffers.
They made an estimated 15 such withdrawals without any officer querying as to why such larges amounts were being withdrawn at any one time.
The Star had on Aug 28, 2001 exposed that a syndicate had ripped off Tabung Haji of an estimated RM8.96mil.