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Shafee loses bid to stay proceedings of LHDN suit

The court rejects his argument of special circumstances warranting a stay of the proceedings.

2 minute read
Lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah. Photo: Bernama
Lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah. Photo: Bernama

The Kuala Lumpur High Court today dismissed an application by lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah to stay the proceeding of a suit against him by the Inland Revenue Board (LHDN) for failing to pay income tax arrears amounting to RM9.41 million.

Shafee had applied to stay the proceeding pending the disposal of his appeal to the Special Commissioners of Income Tax of Malaysia.

His lawyer, Muhammad Farhan Muhammad Shafee, said judicial commissioner Roz Mawar Rozain dismissed the application with costs of RM5,000 to be paid to LHDN.

"The court rejected Shafee's argument that there were special circumstances to stay the proceedings. The court fixed Oct 6 for case management to set the hearing date," he said when contacted by reporters after the online proceedings today.

Senior revenue counsel Al-Hummidallah Idrus, representing LHDN, confirmed the matter.
At today's proceedings, Shafee was also represented by lawyers Rajan Navaratnam and Wee Yeong Kang, while LHDN was also represented by senior revenue counsel Norhisham Ahmad and Muhammad Faqrol Syazreen Mohd Ghause.

Shafee, 70, filed the application on Nov 3 last year, seeking among others an order for the proceedings to be temporarily suspended pending the outcome of an application filed by former prime minister Najib Razak and his son, Mohd Nazifuddin, regarding the payment of income tax amounting to RM1.69 billion and RM37.6 million respectively, to LHDN, before the Federal Court.

Among the grounds cited by Shafee was that he had filed a notice of appeal against the notices on additional assessment for the assessment years 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2016, to LHDN on June 27, 2019. He also said that special circumstances existed warranting the stay.

On Sept 27 last year, LHDN applied for its suit against Shafee, which was filed on May 6, to be decided through summary judgment, on grounds that the defendant had failed to pay the income tax arrears amounting to RM9,414,708.32 within the stipulated time.

Shafee also faces two charges of receiving RM9.5 million in proceeds from unlawful activities from Najib, and two charges of making false declarations to LHDN.