KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court has found Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor (pic) guilty in his RM2mil corruption case on Monday (Dec 21).
Justice Mohamed Zaini Mazlan said the former federal territories minister has failed to raise any reasonable doubt on the charge against him.
Tengku Adnan had in his defence said he raised RM2mil money to fund the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections, but this was shot down by the court.
“I am unable to accept that the accused alone was entrusted to raise funds for the by-elections, as these two constituencies were not in his domain as the chairman of the Federal Territories Umno or Barisan Nasional. He was furthermore not the treasurer as claimed.
"It is undoubtedly apparent that the RM2mil remains in Tadmansori's (Tadmansori Holdings Sdn Bhd – which belonged to Tengku Adnan) account for the accused's benefit.
“There is no evidence to prove the accused had withdrawn money from Tadmansori’s account to pay for the expenses of the two by-elections.
“It is therefore established that the accused had used Tadmansori as a facade to receive the fruits of his crime," the judge said here on Monday.
Justice Zaini said the accused, who had maintained throughout the trial that he was a man of means, had pocketed the RM2mil for himself.
“I accept the accused’s contention that he did not intend to brag when declaring his worth and that he merely wanted to assert that RM2mil was not an amount that would entice him.
“RM2mil, in my view, is a substantial amount of money, even for a millionaire. It is fallacious to think that a wealthy person is incapable of committing wrong to make financial gains.
Justice Zaini said the court had conducted a maximum evaluation of all evidence and found the prosecution had proven its case against the accused.
“I therefore found the accused guilty and convict him on the charge against him, ” he added.
Tengku Adnan, better known as Ku Nan, was charged in his capacity as a public servant, namely Federal Territories Minister, with having received for himself a total of RM2mil from businessman Tan Sri Chai Kin Kong, who is Aset Kayamas Sdn Bhd (AKSB) director, via a Hong Leong Islamic Bank cheque belonging to the company which was deposited into a CIMB account owned by Tadmansori Holdings Sdn Bhd (THSB), which Tengku Adnan has an interest in and is known to AKSB as being related to his official duties.
The Putrajaya MP was accused of committing the offence, under Section 165 of the Penal Code, at CIMB Bank Bhd's Pusat Bandar Damansara branch here on June 14,2016.
The trial of the case began on July 2,2019, with the prosecution calling 23 witnesses, who included two former Kuala Lumpur mayors, Tan Sri Ahmad Phesal Talib and Tan Sri Mohd Amin Nordin Abd Aziz, as well as Chai, the star prosecution witness.
On Oct 14,2019, the High Court ordered Tengku Adnan to enter his defence on the corruption charge after finding the prosecution had succeeded in establishing a prima facie case against him.
Tengku Adnan, who is former Umno secretary-general, chose to give his sworn statement from the witness stand and his defence proceedings were held for two days, on Jan 17 and March 5.
In his testimony, Tengku Adnan admitted that he received a RM2mil cheque from Chai on June 14,2016, for campaign expenses in the Sungai Besar (Selangor) and Kuala Kangsar (Perak) by-elections on June 18 the same year.
The by-elections were held following the death of the two incumbents, Datuk Noriah Kasnon and Datuk Wan Mohamad Khairil Anuar Wan Ahmad, both from Umno, in a helicopter crash in Sebuyau, Sarawak, on May 5,2016.
The former minister also told the court that the RM2mil given by Chai was like "pocket money” to him.
Other witnesses called to testify were Tengku Adnan’s former political secretary Datuk Mohd Rafi Alli Hassan, Simpang Renggam Umno division chief, Datuk Zakaria Dullah and former Sungai Besar by-election director Datuk Rizalman Mokhtar.
On June 30, the defence closed its case after calling four witnesses, in a proceeding which lasted for four days from March 4 with Tengku Adnan being called as the first defence witness.
On Dec 7, Tengku Adnan was given a discharge not amounting to an acquittal by another High Court here on a charge of accepting a RM1mil bribe from businessman Datuk Tan Eng Boon, who had pleaded guilty to an alternative charge of abetting the politician, and was fined RM1.5mil.
Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali made the decision after being informed that the prosecution did not wish to continue the case against Tengku Adnan as there were new developments in the case.