Hydroshoppe director gets passport back for business trip to US, Germany

KUALA LUMPUR: The Sessions Court on Thursday (Feb 22) granted an application by Hydroshoppe Sdn Bhd director Datuk Abdul Hamid Shaikh Abdul Razak Shaikh to temporarily obtain his passport for a work-related trip to the United States and Germany in February and March.

Judge Suzana Hussin allowed the temporary return of Abdul Hamid Shaikh's passport, from Thursday until March 20 after his lawyer, Weera Premananda, informed the court that his client needed to go on a business trip to the United States from Feb 23 to March 1, as well as promote Malaysia at the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) exhibition in Berlin, Germany, from March 5 to 7.

"My client has consistently complied with the terms and conditions throughout this case, and we understand the prosecution does not oppose this application," said the lawyer during Thursday's proceedings.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Rasyidah Murni Azmi confirmed the matter.

On April 5 last year, Abdul Hamid Shaikh, 50, was charged with offering a bribe through Datuk Tan Ser Lay, 60, as an incentive to Tan Sri Annuar Musa, who was then the communications and multimedia minister, to expedite the takeover of the management and administration of the Kuala Lumpur Tower concession by Hydroshoppe.

He is accused of allegedly committing the act at the Communications and Multimedia Ministry, Putrajaya, between July and August 2022, under Section 16(6)(B) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act (MACC) 2009.

The offence is punishable by up to 20 years imprisonment, a fine of not less than five times the bribe amount or RM10,000, whichever is higher, upon conviction.

Meanwhile, Hydroshoppe is also charged as a commercial organisation for conspiring with the accused to offer the bribe to Tan for the benefit of Annuar with the same intent, at the same location and date.

The charge is framed under Section 17A(1)(a) of the MACC Act 2009, which carries a fine of not less than 10 times the bribe amount or RM1mil, whichever is higher, or a maximum of 20 years imprisonment, or both, upon conviction. - Bernama

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