GEORGE TOWN: The High Court here has acquitted Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng and businesswoman Phang Li Koon over the alleged conversion of land status and purchase of a bungalow below market value.
High Court judge Justice Hadhariah Syed Ismail acquitted both the accused and decided the charges be dropped despite the prosecution only proposing a discharge not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA).
Hadhariah however said both the accused will be released immediately and would not be called again for the case in future, as they are discharged amounting to acquittal.
The joint trial of Lim, who is former Penang chief minister, and Phang, was in connection to the conversion of land from agriculture to residential status, and the purchase of a plot of land and a bungalow at below market value.
Lim was sworn in as Finance Minister on May 21, following Pakatan Harapan’s victory in the May 9 polls.
He was charged with using his position as chief minister to gain gratification for himself and his wife Betty Chew by approving the application for conversion of agricultural land to a public housing zone in Balik Pulau to Magnificent Emblem Sdn Bhd.He faced a second charge of using his position to obtain a plot of land and bungalow at No 25, Jalan Pinhorn, on July 28, 2015, from Phang for RM2.8mil, at below market value.