1MDB forfeiture: Rosmah, jewellery firm both stake claim on diamond bracelet


KUALA LUMPUR: Lebanese jewellery company Global Royalty Trading SAL and Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor (pic) are both staking a claim on a US$220,000 white gold diamond bracelet which is currently stored in Bank Negara Malaysia's (BNM) vaults, the High Court here heard on Wednesday (May 25).

Rosmah’s lawyer Azamuddin Abd Aziz informed Judge Datuk Muhammad Jamil Hussin that the wife of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak wanted to proceed with her claim on the said bracelet.

"The pictures of the jewellery would be received today. We need time to seek... instructions from Rosmah regarding the third-party claim,” he said when the matter came up for case management.

Previously, Rosmah’s legal team had applied for pictures of the seized jewellery to facilitate her claim.

Meanwhile, Global Royalty’s lawyer Datuk David Gurupatham insisted that the bracelet belonged to the jewellery company as it was already verified by an expert from the company during a physical inspection last year.

"My Lord, Rosmah did not turn up to BNM for the inspection, and she waived the right for the inspection of the jewellery. For the record, Supt Foo Wei Min, who was the officer in charge, has physically inspected every single piece of the jewels. An expert from Global Royalty also verified that it belonged to the company,” said the counsel.

The bracelet was among various items seized by the police from premises belonging to Obyu Holdings Sdn Bhd at Pavilion Residences in May 2018, and allegedly linked to the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) financial scandal.

In 2019, the prosecution filed the forfeiture application to seize various items including 11,991 items of jewellery, 401 watch straps and 16 watch accessories, 234 pairs of spectacles and 306 handbags, as well as cash in various denominations amounting to RM114,164,393.44.

During Wednesday’s proceedings, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah said the former prime minister’s present third-party claim is only on seven watches and not on the bracelet.

The lawyer had applied for the court to hold a separate hearing on Najib’s claim regarding the watches.

Muhammad Shafee asked for the prosecution to amend its notice of motion (regarding the forfeiture suit) to facilitate a separate hearing on the seven watches.

"In regard to Najib’s claim, it is over seven units of watches. The others are settled. For the prosecution to make an amendment, it is very simple... (it can be done) orally,” Muhammad Shafee said, adding that this would prevent a delay in hearing the rest of the forfeiture claim involving other items.

Deputy public prosecutor Faten Hadni Khairuddin, in responding to Muhammad Shafee’s bid for a separate hearing on the claim for the watches, told the court they needed more time to file a proper application to amend the notice of motion.

Muhammad Jamil fixed June 8 for case management to allow the prosecution to amend the forfeiture action’s court documents. – Bernama

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