KUALA LUMPUR: The prosecution in the graft trial of Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, involving tens of millions of ringgit belonging to charitable foundation Yayasan Akalbudi funds, has closed its case after its final witness completed his testimony.
The prosecution trial concluded after the 99th witness, investigating officer Khairudin Kilau from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), was released from the stand on Friday (March 19) after testifying for three days.
The hearing lasted for 53 days.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Datuk Raja Rozela Raja Toran told the High Court here that the prosecution rested its case and offered 37 witnesses to the defence, if Ahmad Zahid was called to enter his defence.
The witnesses offered are Ahmad Zahid's wife Datin Seri Hamidah Khamis, his daughter Datuk Nurulhidayah, his brother Datuk Seri Mohamad Nasaee Ahmad Tarmizi, Foreign Ministry deputy secretary-general (Operations) Datuk Wahab Mohd Yassin and businessman Datuk Seri Khalid Mohamad Jiwa or better known as Datuk K, who is the husband of singer Datuk Seri Siti Nurhaliza Tarudin.
Justice Collin Lawrence Sequerah ordered for the parties to file their written submissions by May 28 and their reply to the written submissions by June 11.
The court also fixed June 28 to 30 and July 1 and 2 for oral submissions.
The prosecution was led by DPP Raja Rozela, assisted by DPPs Ahmad Sazilee Abdul Khairi, Gan Peng Kun, Lee Keng Fatt, Harris Ong Mohd Jeffery Ong, Mohd Afif Ali and Nur Aishah Maulat Ahmad Zakiuddin.
Ahmad Zahid's defence team comprised lawyers Hisyam Teh Poh Teik, Datuk Ahmad Zaidi Zainal, Hamidi Mohd Noh, Datuk Rosal Azimin and Haziq Dhiyauddin Razali.
On Oct 19 and Dec 14,2018, and Feb 20,2019, Ahmad Zahid claimed trial at the Sessions Court here to a total of 47 charges, 12 of which are for criminal breach of trust (CBT), eight for bribery and 27 for money laundering involving tens of millions of ringgit belonging to Yayasan Akalbudi.
For the 12 CBT charges, Ahmad Zahid was alleged to have used the funds to make payments for personal credit cards, insurance policies and personal vehicle licences, remittances to a law firm and contributions to the Royal Malaysia Police football association.
He was alleged to have committed the offences at the Affin Bank Berhad branch in Jalan Bunus off Jalan Masjid India, here between Jan 13,2014, and Dec 23,2016.
The charge under Section 409 of the Penal Code provides for a jail term of between two and 20 years, and with whipping and fine, upon conviction.
The 68-year-old Bagan Datuk MP was also charged with eight counts of receiving bribes from three companies, namely Mastoro Kenny IT Consultant & Services, Data Sonic Group Bhd and Profound Radiance Sdn Bhd as an inducement for him, in his capacity as the then home minister, to help the companies obtain MyEG projects, for the supply of passport chips and to be appointed the operator of migrant visa one-stop centres in Pakistan and Nepal respectively.
He was accused of having committed all the offences at the Maybank branch at Dataran Maybank in Jalan Maarof, Bangsar, between July 15,2016, and March 15,2018, under Section 16(a)(B) of the MACC Act 2009.
He faces a jail term of up to 20 years and a fine of not less than five times the bribe amount or RM10,000, whichever is higher, if convicted.
He also faces 27 money-laundering charges by engaging in direct transactions involving proceeds from illegal activities between March 29,2016, and April 11,2018.
He was charged under Section 4(1)(a) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001, for which the penalty upon conviction, provides a maximum 15-year jail term and a fine of up to five times of the proceeds from the illegal activities or RM5mil, whichever is higher, if convicted.