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Unbelievable for Najib to turn a blind eye to millions deposited into his accounts, court told

Ad hoc prosecutor V Sithambaram says the former prime minister should have at least enquired about the source and legality of the funds in question.

2 minute read
Former prime minister Najib Razak leaves the courtroom at the Federal Court in Putrajaya today. Photo: Bernama
Former prime minister Najib Razak leaves the courtroom at the Federal Court in Putrajaya today. Photo: Bernama

It was totally unbelievable how former prime minister Najib Razak could turn a blind eye when millions of ringgit were being deposited into his personal bank accounts, the Federal Court heard today.

Ad hoc prosecutor V Sithambaram said given the continuous flow of large amounts of money into his bank accounts, Najib ought to have at least made enquiries as to the source and legality of those funds.

"Turning a blind eye to millions (of ringgit) being deposited into his accounts for the sole reason that the management of his bank accounts had been delegated to former SRC CEO Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil, and that for five years he did not personally know the balance in his accounts, is completely and totally unbelievable," the deputy public prosecutor said in his submissions before a five-man bench led by Chief Justice Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat. 

The other judges on the bench were Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak Abang Iskandar Abang Hashim and Federal Court judges Nallini Pathmanathan, Mary Lim Thiam Suan and Mohamad Zabidin Mohd.

Sithambaram said Najib purportedly relied on his private secretary at the time, the late Azlin Alias, to know if he could issue his cheques.

"The appellant blatantly refused to acknowledge that he knew his account balance as that would impute his knowledge of the RM42 million deposit into his personal bank accounts.

"Najib never testified as to whether he enquired from Azlin, Nik Faisal or even fugitive businessman Low Teik Jho or Jho Low as to the source of the funds in his accounts which he was happy to spend without question," he said.

Sithambaram submitted that even when the source of the funds in Najib's accounts became the subject matter of official investigations by the relevant authorities, he continued to remain passive and did not even attempt to lodge a police report on the funds deposited.

"When he was told that the funds were from SRC, he again did nothing," he said.

On the so-called Arab donation, Sithambaram said the Pekan MP had vehemently argued that the money in his personal accounts originated from the Saudi royalty.

However, he said the trial judge had fittingly found that the Arab donation story was unbelievable when weighed against the totality of the evidence.

On the issue of knowledge, meanwhile, he said Najib himself had admitted that the money came from SRC International.

He said this was affirmed by Najib in an affidavit filed in his lawsuit against former MCA president Ling Liong Sik in 2016.

Therefore, he said it was clear that Najib had deliberately lied when he said that he did not know the source of the funds when asked about it during the SRC International trial.

The prosecution has closed its submissions with the proceedings to continue on Tuesday.