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Probe Razak Baginda over Scorpene deal now, suggests ex-judge

The government must probe the Scorpene submarine deal and former premier Najib Abdul Razak's close associate, Abdul Razak Baginda, according to former Federal Court Judge Gopal Sri Ram.

Sri Ram alleged there are other monies misappropriated from the government which have yet to be recovered apart from those linked to the 1MDB scandal.

"I have in mind the huge bribes that were obtained in the Scorpene deal. Those monies were acquired through a criminal act and as such, should be recovered.

"Just as the elusive Jho Low is intrinsically connected to 1MDB, Abdul Razak has an equal connection with the Scorpene deal.

"It is my respectful view that he should be sought and interrogated as to the whereabouts of those funds," the former top judge told Malaysiakini and FMT.

Razak had apparently advised Najib when he was defence minister between 2000 and 2008.

The submarines, including two Scorpene-cass and one Agosta class, were purchased for nearly one billion euros (US$1.18 billion) from DCN which is linked to Thales.

Last August, it was reported that French human rights lawyer William Bourdon confirmed Abdul Razak had been indicted in Paris over alleged kickbacks in the sale of submarines to Malaysia.

Meanwhile, Sri Ram said it is necessary to relook into the purported kickbacks in the case owing to the other allegations related to it.

"This includes the handing over of suitcases of cash, coupled with a spending spree in Paris as well as the dastardly murder of Altantuya Shaariibuu.

"One may well ask why former attorney- general Abdul Gani Patail did not secure the arrest and detention of two police officers pending the public prosecutor's appeal to the Federal Court,” he added.

Former police special operations personnel chief inspector Azilah Hadri and corporal Sirul Azhar Umar were found guilty of murdering Altantuya in January 2015 and sentenced to death.

However, Sirul had fled to Australia when the pair was acquitted prior to the Federal Court overturning the decision.

Sirul is being held an immigration centre and Australian law prevents those facing the death penalty in their home countries to be sent back.

'Commissions and kickbacks'

Meanwhile, anti-corruption watchdog group Center to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4) backed calls for Razak Baginda to be hauled up in regards to the Scorpene affair.

“The Scorpene corruption scandal constitutes one of the BN government’s greatest robberies over its people, committed in the name of being a national secret.

“The corruption scandal centres on the payment of €114 million (RM570 million) in commissions and kickbacks made by Thales and DCNS to Malaysian officials through a company called Perimekar Sdn Bhd (Perimekar).

“It is important to note that Perimekar was controlled by Abdul Razak Baginda, a close associate of Najib Abdul Razak, the then defence minister who inked the procurement agreement,” said C4 in a statement.

It reminded that the murder of Mongolian national Altantuya Shaariibuu although not directly tied to the alleged corruption, was intricately linked with the alleged payments and kickbacks made.

“Cast in this light, C4 calls on the MACC to immediately investigate Abdul Razak Baginda, former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak and those connected to the Scorpene corruption scandal pursuant to section 66 of the MACC Act 2009,” said the body.