The Kuala Lumpur High Court today acquitted and discharged Kinabatangan MP Bung Moktar Radin and his wife Zizie Izette Abdul Samad of all three corruption charges in their RM2.8 million graft case.
Judge Azhar Abdul Hamid made the ruling after allowing their application for a revision against the earlier Sessions Court's decision ordering them to enter their defence.
Azhar ruled that it was a fit and proper case to exercise revisionary power under Section 323 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC).
"After examining the records of proceedings, this court finds that there is no evidence that the 24th prosecution witness, namely Public Mutual Berhad's investment agent Madhi Abdul Hamid, and the 25th prosecution witness, Unit Amanah consultant Norhaili Ahmad Mokhtar, had given money to Bung Mokhtar through his wife.
"So the decision of the Sessions Court to call for defence is a miscarriage of justice. I hereby invoke Section 325 of the CPC to acquit and discharge both of them," he said.
The prosecution was led by deputy public prosecutor Low Chin How, while lawyers K Kumaraendran and M Athimulan acted for Bung Mokhtar and Zizie Izette, respectively.
The Sessions Court, on Sept 2 last year, ordered Bung Mokhtar and Zizie Izette to enter their defence on all three corruption charges. This prompted them to file revision applications in the High Court against the Sessions Court's ruling.
However, the High Court struck out their applications without hearing the merits of the applications after allowing the prosecution preliminary objections against the applications.
The couple subsequently filed the appeal with the Court of Appeal, and on July 7 2023, they won the appeal. The court remitted the revision applications back to the High Court for the merits of the applications to be heard.
On May 3, 2019, Bung Moktar, who was then the non-executive chairman of Felcra, was charged with two charges of accepting bribes of RM2.2 million and RM262,500 as an inducement to obtain Felcra approval to invest RM150 million in Public Mutual unit trusts.
He is alleged to have accepted the bribes from Public Mutual Berhad's investment agent Madhi Abdul Hamid through Zizie Izette at the Public Bank Taman Melawati Branch in Kuala Lumpur between 12.30pm and 5pm on June 12, 2015.
Bung Moktar was also charged with receiving RM337,500 in cash from Unit Amanah consultant Norhaili Ahmad Mokhtar under the name of Zizie Izette for the same reason and place on June 19, 2015, while Zizie Izette faced three charges of abetting her husband over the matter at the same place, date, and time.
Previously, Sessions Court judge Rozina Ayob had fixed Sept 23, 2022, for Bung Moktar and Zizie Izette to enter their defence.
On Sept 23, 2022, the Kuala Lumpur High Court allowed their applications to postpone the defence trial pending disposal of their revision applications.
The trial was set for July 20, 2023, but it was adjourned again pending the disposal of the revision applications.
The Sessions Court had set Sept 13 for mention of the case for parties to update the court on the revision applications that had been heard today at the High Court.