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PUTRAJAYA: The remand of two Datuks who were detained to assist a probe into the Penang undersea tunnel project has been extended until Jan 19.

Magistrate Khir Nizam Jemari granted the remand extension application by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) here on Monday.

The suspects, aged 49 and 59, arrived at the Putrajaya Magistrate’s Court at 9.15am.

Handcuffed and clad in MACC's orange lock-up attire, the duo was escorted to court by MACC officers.

On Jan 10, the MACC attained a six-day remand order against the two men to facilitate an investigation into the controversial project.

The remand for the first man, a deputy chairman of a property development company, was obtained at Penang’s Magistrate's Court; while the remand for the second man, a senior executive director, was secured in Putrajaya.

It is believed that the deputy chairman is being investigated under Section 16(a)(B) of the MACC Act 2009 for soliciting a bribe, which carries a maximum jail term of 20 years and a fine of RM10,000, or five times the value of the bribe, whichever is higher, if convicted.

Both suspects were arrested on Jan 9 after the MACC raided the offices of four state government agencies and three property development and construction companies.

Among the offices raided were the Penang Public Works Department, the Penang State Secretary, the Penang Office of Lands and Mines and the Penang Valuation and Property Services Department.

The 7.2km undersea tunnel is part of a RM6.3 billion project undertaken by Consortium Zenith. It also comprises three paired roads.

The project has raised numerous controversies in recent months, especially on the high cost of its RM305 million feasibility study, as well as its 21-month development delay.

(File pix) The remand of two Datuks who were detained to assist a probe into the Penang undersea tunnel project has been extended until Jan 19.
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