Shafee: Najib's trial taking a lot of time out of those involved

  • Nation
  • Monday, 19 Aug 2019

KUALA LUMPUR: The trials involving former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak are taking a lot of time out of the lives of those involved in it.

Najib's lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, who is the lead counsel in both the SRC International Sdn Bhd and the 1Malaysia Development Bhd trials, said many in his team were no longer able to enjoy their time off as they bring their work on the trials home.

"Many of us, those who play golf, golf is no more. That is not something you can enjoy anymore.

"I go cycling. (But) my bicycle is beginning to rust. For those who go to the gym, their trainer's fees are getting wasted, " he told reporters here on Monday (Aug 19).

He was asked whether the overlapping trials would affect the defence's preparation to handle the cases.

Shafee said a lot of homework was involved in the preparation of a defence in a particular trial, including writing submissions and preparing cross-examination questions.

"Lawyers literally take their work home, which means that you work from the office or home.Sometimes you don't sleep. In the SRC trial alone, many of us are lacking sleep.

"But if you now add another one (the 1MDB trial), it may compromise our ability to do the best defence, " he added.

Earlier, the High Court allowed the prosecution's application to postpone the 1MDB trial to next Monday (Aug 26).

The trial was scheduled to start today.

Najib, 66, is facing four counts under the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act and 21 counts of money laundering involving 1MDB funds amounting to RM2.28bil.

The Pekan MP is alleged to have committed the offences at the AmIslamic Bank Bhd at No 55, Jalan Raja Chulan, Bukit Ceylon between 2011 and 2014.

As for the ongoing SRC trial, Najib is facing seven charges, of which three are for criminal breach of trust, one for abuse of power and three for money laundering involving SRC International funds totalling RM42mil.

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