KUALA LUMPUR: Attorney-General Tommy Thomas today sought to postpone Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s corruption trail involving 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) at the High Court for the third time.
Thomas told High Court judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah this was because the prosecution could not wrap up another case involving the former prime minister and SRC International Sdn Bhd which was still presiding before judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali.
“The trial is moving more slowly than we expected… there is no way we can finish proceedings by Aug 15.
“Thus, we are seeking the court to vacate the dates in August and September which were fixed for the 1MDB trial to make way for SRC International’s trial to continue.
“We have called 40 witnesses in the (SRC International) trial and are expected to call another 25 more,” he said.
Thomas suggested the 1MDB trial, which was scheduled to start on Aug 19, could start in October.
Seqeurah, who is presiding the 1MDB case, then suggested to the prosecution for the cases (1MDB and SRC International) to run simultaneously.
However, Thomas said this would be difficult for the defence team.
“We have different teams for both cases but the defence only has one team. The accused also can’t be in two docks at the same time,” he said, adding that it was a matter of principle, and the second case should not start until the first case was completed.
Sequerah did not make any decision and fixed July 15 for case management for Thomas to update him on the status of the SRC International trial.
On May 14, Seqeurah agreed to a second postponement of the 1MDB trial to Aug 19, to make way for the ongoing SRC International trial.
The SRC International trial was earlier expected to be concluded this month.
On Sept 20 last year, Najib was charged with 25 corruption charges involving RM2.28 billion allegedly from 1MDB.
His first four charges were framed under Section 23(1) and 24(1) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009 while the other 21 charges were under Section 4(1)(a) of the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001 (AMLATFA).
For the charges under the MACC Act, the 66-year-old was accused of using his position as prime minister, finance minister and chairman of the 1MDB advisory board at the time, to receive bribes on four occasions.
Meanwhile, the money-laundering charges include nine counts of receiving illegal proceeds, five counts of using illegal proceeds and seven counts of transferring the proceeds to other entities.