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Zahid to appeal for full acquittal

This follows the High Court's decision to grant the deputy prime minister a discharge not amounting to acquittal.

2 minute read
Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi at the Kuala Lumpur High Court, Aug 1. Photo: Bernama
Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi at the Kuala Lumpur High Court, Aug 1. Photo: Bernama

Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi will file an appeal at the Court of Appeal against the decision of the High Court in granting him a discharge, but not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA), on the 47 charges of criminal breach of trust, corruption, and money laundering in connection with Yayasan Akalbudi funds.

His lawyer, Hisyam Teh Poh Teik, when met by reporters after the proceeding at the Kuala Lumpur High Court today, said he would file the appeal tomorrow.

Earlier, High Court judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah granted Zahid the DNAA after allowing an application by deputy public prosecutor Mohd Dusuki Mokhtar to halt the case as they wanted to investigate the case further.

Meanwhile, another lawyer representing Zahid, Ahmad Zaidi Zainal, said since his client was charged on Oct 19, 2018, the defence had submitted several representations to the Attorney General's Chambers (AGC).

"The latest representation sought for the charges to be reviewed and withdrawn as there was no basis for the charges.

"In February this year, the defence was given a copy of a letter from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission to the AGC that, among other things, stated that a comprehensive investigation is very important so that the investigation team and the prosecution are not criticised by the public and accused of selective prosecution," he said.

Zaidi said he believed that following the application by the AGC today (to halt the case), the matter would likely be manipulated by certain quarters.

"However, we would like to emphasise here that the Attorney-General only exercises his discretion as provided under Article 145(3) of the Federal Constitution.

"In fact, this is not the first time for an attorney-general to use his discretion as provided under the law to take action to withdraw charges made in court," he added.

Meanwhile, Zahid, when met by reporters, expressed his gratitude over the court's decision to stop the proceedings against him.

"Our task in Umno and Barisan Nasional is to continue the struggle to stop politically motivated accusations," he said.

Zahid, 70, had sent a 200-page letter of representation to the AGC in January and February this year as a basis for consideration for the charges made against him to be dropped.

A total of 47 charges were made against him, namely eight charges of corruption, 12 charges of criminal breach of trust, and 27 charges of money laundering involving Yayasan Akalbudi funds.

The trial was now in the defence stage, with a total of 15 witnesses, including Zahid, having been called to testify.