KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama): A lawyer was arraigned in two Sessions Courts here on Wednesday (April 7) on nine charges, including receiving, transferring and using RM6.5mil in funds allegedly derived from illegal activities.
However, M. Pathmarajah, 65, who appeared calm throughout the proceedings, pleaded not guilty after all the charges were read out before judges Datin Sabariah Othman and Kamarudin Kamsun.
Pathmarajah, a partner of law firm Messrs. Mazwan Pathma & Co, was charged before Sabariah with three counts of receiving RM3,735,200, RM640,070 and RM2,161,330 believed to be proceeds of illegal activities, through four cheques deposited into two current accounts belonging to the law firm.
He is accused of committing the offences at the branches of Malayan Banking Berhad and Public Bank Berhad in Jalan Maarof, Bangsar Baru here between Aug 8,2017 and Feb 12,2018.
He is also charged with transferring RM608,370 believed to be derived from illegal activities, from a current account at Malayan Banking Berhad belonging to Messrs. Mazwan Pathma into a fixed deposit account at the same bank belonging to the same law firm, besides issuing cheques of RM1,080,000 and RM2mil from the Malayan Banking Berhad current account to two companies, namely Mitz Luniques Sdn Bhd and Emizen Line Sdn Bhd.
The fourth to sixth counts were allegedly committed at Malayan Banking Berhad, Jalan Maarof, Bangsar Baru here between Feb 12,2018 and April 16,2018.
Before Kamarudin, Pathmarajah was charged with three counts, namely of transferring RM22,000, RM1,594,757 and RM1,538,484 in funds allegedly derived from illegal activities, from the law firm’s two current accounts at Public Bank Berhad and Malayan Banking Berhad into two current accounts at Malayan Banking Berhad and one current account at Public Bank Berhad belonging to the same firm between Aug 16,2017 and March 21,2018.
All the charges were framed under Subsection 4 (1) (b) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds from Illegal Activities Act 2001 (AMLA), which carries a maximum jail term of 15 years, and a fine of not less than five times the amount or value of proceeds from the illegal activity, or RM5 million, whichever is higher, upon conviction.
Pathmarajah was allowed bail of RM100,000 in one surety, apart from having to report to the nearest police station once a month. Both judges set May 4 for mention.
In Wednesday's proceedings, the prosecution was conducted by Lee Keng Fatt, while the accused was represented by lawyers Datuk Vignesh Kumar and Daniel Annamalai.- Bernama