Monday, December 6, 2021

Zahid’s graft trial postponed after lawyer suffers gout episode

The trial continued for 30 minutes before Hamidi Mohd Noh requested a postponement.

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The criminal breach of trust (CBT), corruption and money laundering trial of former deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today went on for only 30 minutes as his lawyer fell ill.

Hamidi Mohd Noh told the court that his ankles were swollen from a gout episode, but added that he was ready to continue submissions today.

“I did not expect to have a gout attack today. It is very painful and I have a doctor’s appointment at 1.30pm,” he said at the trial of Zahid who is facing 47 CBT, corruption and money laundering charges involving Yayasan Akalbudi (YAB) funds.

Judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah then told Hamidi to proceed with his submissions and to inform the court if he was uncomfortable or felt pain.

After about 20 minutes of delivering his submissions while standing, Hamidi sought the court’s permission to be seated, saying the pain had worsened.

As the session continued, the lawyer requested a postponement of the case, saying he could no longer stand the pain although Sequerah had told him earlier that he could deliver his submissions while seated.

Deputy public prosecutor Raja Rozela Raja Toran did not object to the request, saying: “I think we should let him get treatment.”

Sequerah then postponed the hearing to Wednesday.

Earlier, Hamidi submitted that Zahid could not be accused of committing CBT as millions of ringgit which had been withdrawn from the charity foundation had actually been credited into a law firm’s client account.

“The monies still belonged to YAB and were not transferred to other third parties,” he said.

Hamidi also said Zahid had no knowledge of the value of the cheque from YAB funds because his former executive secretary, Mazlina Mazlan @ Ramly, had control and dominion over those cheques.

“She (Mazlina) used a signature stamp to issue cheques. We have established that she was negligent, she did not know how cheques and credit cards work.

“We contend that nobody used a signature stamp for the cheques and its only use was for Hari Raya cards,” he said.

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