Senior corporate lawyer freed of four insider dealing charges

KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama): Senior corporate lawyer, Datuk Sreesanthan Eliathamby (pic) was acquitted and discharged of four charges of insider dealing in three Sessions Courts here today after the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) and Securities Commission (SC) withdrew all the charges against him.

The matter was confirmed by Sreesanthan's counsel, Joshua Andran when contacted by reporters.

Joshua said the AGC and SC also withdrew their appeals in the High Court here against Sreesanthan’s acquittal in the Sessions Court in January 2021 on three charges of insider dealing.

"On Jan 22, 2021, the AGC and SC filed an appeal to the High Court over the Sessions Court’s decision. Sreesanthan’s solicitors then wrote a representation to the AGC and SC which was recently accepted," he said.

Deputy public prosecutor, Hashley Tajudin confirmed the matter.

On Jan 11, 2021, Sessions Court judge Zamri Bakar acquitted Sreesanthan without calling for his defence at the end of the prosecution’s case, agreeing with the defence’s contention that the purported inside information was actually in the public domain, courtesy of several reputable journals and commentaries.

On July 20, 2012, Sreesanthan, a former independent non-executive director of Sime Darby, pleaded not guilty to seven counts of insider trading under the Securities Industry Act and Capital Markets and Services Act, in 2006.

The charges involved insider trading of 625,000 shares in Sime Darby Bhd, Maxis Communications Bhd, UEM World Bhd and VADS Bhd.

He was accused of using information on the acquisition, privatisation and corporate restructuring exercises of the said firms, to acquire the companies’ shares, between 2006 and 2008.

He allegedly committed all the offences at Bursa Malaysia Securities Bhd in Bukit Kewangan, here, between Oct 9, 2006 and Sept 18, 2008.

He was liable to a fine of minimum RM1mil and up to 10 years in prison for each offence committed under the Securities Industry Act 1983 and Capital Markets and Services Act 2007, upon conviction. - Bernama

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