KUALA LUMPUR: The Sessions Court here has allowed a joint trial for the cases involving former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and former 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) CEO Arul Kanda Kandasamy over the alleged tampering of 1MDB’s final audit report.
Sessions Court judge Azura Alwi granted the prosecution’s request for this after hearing the application to transfer by lead prosecutor Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram.
Lawyer Datuk N. Sivananthan, who represented Arul, did not object.
On Dec 12, both Najib and Arul were charged separately at the Sessions Court with allegedly tampering with a final audit report on 1MDB.
According to the charge sheet, Najib used his position as prime minister to gain protection from any action, whether disciplinary, civil or criminal, in connection to 1MDB by ordering the final audit report to be tampered with before it was finalised and presented to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC).
He is said to have committed the offence at the Prime Minister’s Office in Putrajaya between Feb 22 and Feb 26, 2016.
The charge under Section 23(1) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009 carries a maximum 20 years' imprisonment and a fine of no less than five times the amount of gratification or RM10,000, whichever is higher.
Arul was charged with abetting Najib on the same offence at a separate court.