AG-C lists 13 reasons why corruption charges against Muhyiddin should be reinstated

KUALA LUMPUR: The Attorney-General's Chambers (A-GC) today listed 13 reasons why the Court of Appeal should reinstate corruption charges against Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.  

Lead prosecutor Datuk Mohd Dusuki Mokhtar conveyed this in the prosecution's appeal against the full acquittal granted by the High Court against the Perikatan Nasional chairman recently.  

The deputy public prosecutor said the judge erred in terms of law and facts when exercising the inherent power to dismiss the charges against the respondent (Muhyiddin).  

He said it was not appropriate for the court to do so, and an indictment has been preferred in accordance with the law. 

"It is premature at this state to prevent the prosecution from presenting relevant and admissible evidence during the trial through witnesses and documentary evidence to prove its case. 

"The judge erred in terms of law and fact by failing to find that Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) is an organisation as defined within the word 'associate' in Section 3 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act. 

"The learned judge also erred when finding that the interpretation of 'associate' in Section 3 of the said Act is exhaustive and restrictive. 

"Its implementation should encompass all categories of associates including individuals, groups, business entities, or organisations," he said.  

Dusuki said the judge was wrong to find that the terms 'association' and 'organisation' have been distinguished in the MACC Act.  

He argued that the distinction between these terms cannot be used to interpret the word 'organisation' in the definition of 'associate' because each term within an act should be interpreted according to the legislative intent and its contextual usage. 

"The judge failed to take into consideration the general purpose of introducing the MACC Act which was aimed to ensure it could be used more effectively to combat corruption. 

"The judge also failed to appreciate the legislative intent that amending the word 'firm' to 'organisation' in the definition of 'associate' under Section 3 of the Act should be given a broader interpretation to ensure the term 'organisation' also encompasses other entities such as association, union, body, or firm," he said.  

He said the lower court also erred to decide that the omission to specify how the respondent had abused his position resulted in a defect in the charges.  

Dusuki said the omission is not an irreparable matter at this state, as the prosecution can still present evidence to identify the violations and amend the charges at any state of the trial.  

"The lower court judge was wrong when he decided that the omission to state details in the charges was confusing and unjust to the respondent.  

"This can be determined at the end of the trial after taking into consideration all the evidence presented before the presiding judge. 

"The judge erred when exercising its inherent power to dismiss charges against the respondent as the latter failed to prove that the charges against him constituted an abuse of the court process," he added. 

The Court of Appeal has fixed Feb 28 and 29 to hear submissions from both parties.  

On March 10, the Pagoh member of Parliament was charged with two counts of receiving RM195 million funds, that were proceeds from unlawful activities between Feb 25 and July 16, 2021 and Feb 8 till July 8 last year. 

The funds were credited into the party's CIMB bank account. He was accused of committing the offence at the CIMB Bank KL Tower branch, Jalan Stesen Sentral, here. 

He was then charged with one more count of receiving RM5 million funds, from Bukhary Equity Sdn Bhd, that were proceeds from unlawful activities on Jan 7 last year. 

The funds were credited into the party's Ambank bank account. He was accused of committing the offence at the Ambank Amcorp Mall branch, Jalan Persiaran Barat, Petaling Jaya, here.

The charges were framed under Section 4(1)(b) of the AMLATFPUAA.

The offence under AMLATFPUAA carries a jail term not exceeding 15 years and a fine of at least five times the sum obtained from money laundering or RM5 million, whichever is higher, upon conviction. 

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