KUALA LUMPUR: The RM2.2bil 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MBD) trial involving former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, which was initially scheduled to resume on Monday (May 3), has been put off due to Covid-19.
One of the lawyers in Najib's defence team, Muhammad Farhan Muhammad Shafee, confirmed that the trial had to be postponed.
He said Najib's appeal in the RM42mil SRC International Sdn Bhd case at the Court of Appeal was also affected.
"Both the SRC appeal and the 1MDB trial had to be vacated this week because a key member of our team has to be tested and quarantined due to close contact with a number of confirmed Covid-19 patients.
"Considering the rest of the team have been working closely with him, the necessary precautions need to be taken," Muhammad Farhan told the press via text message here on Monday.
The 1MDB trial was initially scheduled for a two-day hearing on Monday and Tuesday (May 3-4) this week, while the SRC appeal was scheduled to resume on Thursday (May 6).
Deputy Public Prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib said the defence had sent a letter to inform the court late Friday.
"Based on those reasons, the court allowed (the postponement)," he said.
Former 1MDB Ceo Mohd Hazem Abd Rahman, the 10th prosecution witness, is expected to take the stand when the trial resumes.
The next date scheduled for 1MDB is May 17.
Najib, 68, is facing four charges of abusing his position to obtain gratification totalling RM2.28bil in 1MDB funds and 21 counts of money laundering involving the same money.
In the SRC case, Najib is appealing against his conviction and sentence. He was sentenced to 12 years' jail and a RM210mil fine after he was found guilty on seven charges of criminal breach of trust (CBT), money laundering and abuse of position involving the misappropriation of RM42mil from SRC's coffers.