PUTRAJAYA (Bernama): Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah have filed an application to introduce new evidence in their appeals to disqualify former Federal Court Judge Gopal Sri Ram as deputy public prosecutor in their cases.
Shafee told the Court of Appeal's three-member bench Friday (Aug 16) that they had filed the notice of motion on Thursday (Aug 15) to seek leave to include Sri Ram's letter of appointment as new evidence in their appeals.
He said he received a copy of Sri Ram's appointment letter on Aug 9, following a Federal Court's decision on Aug 7 to allow Najib's appeal for the prosecution to produce Sri Ram's letter of appointment to the defence.
On Aug 7, the Federal Court's seven-member bench led by Chief Justice Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat had dismissed Najib's appeal to disqualify Sri Ram to lead the prosecution team as senior deputy public prosecutor in his (Najib's) 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) trial.
Shafee told the court Friday that Sri Ram should not have been appointed under
Section 376(3) of the Criminal Procedure Code as that section applies only to deputy public prosecutors, instead he (Sri Ram) should be appointed on ad hoc basic.
Justice Hasnah Mohammed Hashim, who chaired the bench Friday, then fixed Aug 26 for the hearing of the applications and appeals after allowing senior federal counsel Shamsul Bolhassan's request for an adjournment.
"There is a Certificate of Urgency filed, which means this matter must be heard early, " said Justice Hasnah who presided with Justices Lau Bee Lan and Has Zanah Mehat.
Shamsul, who appeared for the Attorney General/Public Prosecutor, the government and Sri Ram, told the court that he needed time to decide whether an affidavit-in-reply should be filed.
He said he would undertake to notify the court and Shafee by Wednesday (Aug 21) if there was no necessity to file the affidavit.
Justice Hasnah also reminded Shafee to file his written submissions by Aug 20.
Najib and Shafee are appealing against the High Court's dismissal on Feb 20, of their application for leave for a judicial review to challenge Sri Ram's appointment as head of the prosecution team in their cases.
Shafee acted for Najib as well as representing himself in the matters before the court on Friday.
Najib and Shafee had separately filed the judicial review in December last year naming the Attorney General/Public Prosecutor, the Government of Malaysia and Sri Ram as respondents.
They sought a court order to revoke or recuse the appointment of Sri Ram by stating that his letter of appointment was invalid.
They also sought a declaration that there was a conflict of interest in Sri Ram's appointment and requested for a court order to prohibit him (Sri Ram) from leading the prosecution team in all their cases. - Bernama