Syed Saddiq to know if he has to defend against CBT charges

KUALA LUMPUR: Politician Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman (pic) will know today whether he will be acquitted or ordered to enter his defence by the High Court on charges of abetting in criminal breach of trust (CBT), misappropriation of assets and money laundering.

Judicial Commissioner Azhar Abdul Hamid is scheduled to deliver the decision at 9.30am.

If the decision favours the prosecution in that it was able to prove a prima facie case against Syed Saddiq, the court will order the former youth and sports minister to enter his defence.

Otherwise, the incumbent Muar MP will walk out a free man.

On Sept 27, the prosecution closed its case after calling 30 witnesses in the trial which began on May 21, according to Bernama.

The witnesses included Syed Saddiq’s parents – Shariffah Mahani Syed Abdul Aziz and Syed Abdul Rahman Abdullah Asagoff – and Rafiq Hakim (the former assistant treasurer of Bersatu Armada), as well as Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) investigating officers Nurul Hidayah Kamarudin, Syahmeizy Sulong and Asbi Munip.

Deputy public prosecutors Datuk Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin and Mohd ‘Afif Ali prosecuted, while lawyers Gobind Singh Deo and Haijan Omar represented Syed Saddiq.

Syed Saddiq, 29, was charged as the then Bersatu youth wing or Armada chief, who was entrusted with control of its funds, with abetting Rafiq Hakim with CBT of RM1mil in funds belonging to the wing at CIMB Bank Bhd, Menara CIMB KL Sentral, Jalan Stesen Sentral 2, here on March 6, 2020.

The charge, framed under Section 406 of the Penal Code, provides imprisonment for up to 10 years with whipping and a fine, if found guilty.

He was also charged under Section 403 of the Penal Code for allegedly having misused RM120,000 from the Maybank Islamic Bhd account belonging to Armada Bumi Bersatu Enterprise for himself by causing Rafiq Hakim to dispose of the money at Malayan Banking Bhd, Jalan Pandan 3/6A, Taman Pandan Jaya here, between April 8 and 21, 2018.

He faces imprisonment for up to five years with whipping and a fine, if found guilty of the offence.

He also faces two counts of engaging in money-laundering activities, namely two transactions of RM50,000 each believed to be proceeds from unlawful activities, from his Maybank Islamic Bhd account into his Amanah Saham Bumiputra account at a bank in Jalan Persisiran Perling, Taman Perling, Johor Baru, on June 16 and 19, 2018.

The charge was framed under Section 4(1)(b) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 which provides imprisonment for up to 15 years and a fine not less than five times the sum or value of the proceeds of the unlawful activity, if found guilty.

Seemingly confident that the court will rule in his favour, Syed Saddiq posted on social media that he is confident in the court’s ability and would be looking forward to continuing his political career after the end of the trial.

“I hope for the best and have full faith in the judicial institution.

“Once it is over, I want to focus on serving the people again,” he tweeted yesterday.

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