Crime & Courts

Rosmah: Charges against me defective, premature, inconclusive

KUALA LUMPUR: Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor has argued that all money laundering and tax evasion charges against her were defective, premature, and inconclusive.

The wife of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak described the charges as "legally insufficient" as not submitting an annual income statement to the Inland Revenue Board (IRB) should not constitute the offence of money laundering.

She said all 17 charges involving more than RM7 million overlapped with each other and lead to the violation of her personal liberty and equal protection of the law as stipulated under the Federal Constitution.

"Referring to these charges, it is evident that I will not receive a fair trial.

"There is a possibility that I may be tried, convicted, and sentenced more than once for the same offence.

"Based on the details stated in the charges, it is confusing because it has combined the offence of money laundering with the predicate offence.

"Therefore, I am unclear whether I am being charged under the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (AMLATFAPUA) or Income Tax Act (ITA) 1967," she said.

Rosmah said this in her affidavit-in-reply to deputy public prosecutor Poh Yih Tinn's affidavit, which opposed her application to dismiss all charges against her last month.

Rosmah also contended that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) did not have the power to investigate her under the ITA as it is within the jurisdiction of the IRB.

"MACC has usurped powers granted to IRB by conducting the investigation against me.

"It also indicated that they (MACC) have abused their power and the investigation and prosecution against me were done with malicious intent," she said.

The prosecution, when objecting to Rosmah's application, contended that all money laundering and tax evasion charges were carried out in accordance with the stipulated written law.

Rosmah in her application claimed that there was no order, directive, request, or demand indicating that the amounts in those charges are subjected to tax payment under the ITA 1967.

She also asserted that she has the substantive right to refer the question of whether the contested amounts are subject to taxation to the Special Commissioners of Income Tax (SCIT), a right that has been denied to her in this case.

High Court judge K. Muniandy set Dec 13 to hear the application.

Rosmah is facing 12 charges of money laundering involving RM7,097,750 and five charges of failing to declare her income to the IRB.

She is accused of committing the offences between Dec 4, 2013, and June 8, 2017.

The trial which commenced on Aug 24 saw the first prosecution witness testify that a total of RM1,098,200 was deposited into her bank account in a span of four years.

Lead prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib in his opening statement contended that the accused received millions of ringgit despite being unemployed.

He said Rosmah also never disclosed to the Inland Revenue Board (IRB) about the monies she received.

Akram said the accused used the services of Seri Perdana Complex residential house manager Roslan Sohari to make these deposits on her behalf.

The monies, he said, were subsequently utilised by the accused to pay telephone and credit card bills incurred by the accused and members of her family.

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