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Shafee gets temporary release of passport for trip to Italy

His lawyer says he needs to be in Italy to settle matters related to his daughter's transfer from the International School of Europe in Milan to the International School of Kuala Lumpur.

2 minute read
Lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah.
Lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah.

The Kuala Lumpur High Court today granted lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah the temporary release of his passport for travel to Italy, to settle matters regarding his daughter’s school transfer.

Judge Muhammad Jamil Hussin allowed the application for the passport to be released from July 8 to Aug 11 after deputy public prosecutor Afzainizam Abdul Aziz raised no objections.

Counsel Wee Yeong Kang, representing Shafee, said his client needed to be in Italy to settle matters related to the transfer of his second daughter from the International School of Europe in Milan, Italy, to the International School of Kuala Lumpur.

“He will also be meeting his eldest daughter who is studying at John Cabot University in Rome, Italy,” he said.

According to the notice of motion filed on June 24, Shafee requested that his international passport be temporarily handed over to him at the latest by July 1 so that he could make preparations to leave for Italy from KLIA on July 8.

Shafee, 70, who is former prime minister Najib Razak’s lead counsel in cases related to SRC International and 1MDB, was granted permission to travel abroad on several other occasions after he himself was charged in court.

The lawyer surrendered his passport to the court in September 2018 after he was charged with two counts of receiving money from illegal activities amounting to RM9.5 million through two cheques issued by Najib, which were allegedly deposited into his CIMB Bank account.

He also faces two charges of engaging in transactions resulting from illegal activities, namely submitting incorrect tax returns in violation of Paragraph 113(1)(a) of the Income Tax Act 1967 for the financial years ended Dec 31, 2013 and 2014.

On May 12, the prosecution closed his case after calling eight witnesses during the trial which began on May 21, 2021. Oral submissions are set for Sept 15 before judge Jamil.