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After arriving separately, Najib-Rosmah leave court hand-in-hand

KEY HIGHLIGHTS

  • Rosmah and Najib leave the court complex together
  • Rosmah claims trial to 17 charges of money laundering, including five related to tax declaration.
  • Bail for Rosmah set at RM2mil; RM500,000 to be paid today
  • Prosecution requests bail of RM10mil for Rosmah, Defence wants RM10,000.
  • Talks on pre-trial conference break down, judge sets Oct 31 for Najib's case management
  • Najib's case: Prosecution denies ulterior motive behind handing documents in CD format
  • Rosmah and Najib arrives in court
  • Journalists begin lining up to obtain limited passes to cover both cases inside the public galleries

1PM: This marks the end of Malaysiakini's live updates on former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak's court proceedings today. Thank you for following us. 


12.43pm: Kuala Lumpur Court Complex – Both Rosmah's lawyers K Kumaraendran (photo, right) and Geethan Ram Vincent hold a press conference outside the court.

They say it was not right to accuse Rosmah of tampering with potential witnesses based on a police report, without first questioning her or giving her the opportunity to respond.

They add that the police report was lodged last Friday by MACC and not the potential witness.


For the full story: read Rosmah's lawyers cry foul over 'witness tampering' claim


12.32pm: Kuala Lumpur Court Complex – Najib and Rosmah leave the court together without taking questions from the media.

They both, however, turn back to wave at the crowd as they are ushered towards their vehicle by bodyguards.

One supporter named Rash manages to get close to Najib and gives him a hug. The former premier responds with a smile and returns the hug.

12.26pm: Kuala Lumpur Court Complex – Shafee says that he hopes the fugitive businessperson Low Taek Jho, better known as Jho Low, will turn up to be questioned during Najib's trial.

"I hope Jho Low turns up. We have millions of documents but we don't have 'human' document," Shafee said, adding that he would like to cross-examine Low.


For  the full story: read Najib's lawyer hopes Jho Low will turn up, wants to cross-examine him


11.43am: Kuala Lumpur Court Complex – Najib's lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah reiterates his dissatisfaction over the documents that were sent in a CD format.

"This is the first time in Malaysian history that documents are submitted in a CD format. About one-third of it cannot be read," he tells a press conference outside the building.

"If this can happen to a VIP, it can happen to you, your children and your grandchildren," he says.

When asked how he felt about the defence, Shafee expressed confidence in his team.

"We have a strong defence. I am confident the trial will be a fair one," he said.

11.14am: Kuala Lumpur Court Complex – Actress Ellie Suriati is seen within the complex, in tears.

She says to Malaysiakini that she is moved to tears, witnessing the relationship between Najib and Rosmah. 

She says: "They are able to stand through thick and thin together, despite the harsh criticism by the Pakatan Harapan government.

"I am touched because they are really good people (and) because he (Najib) is an iconic person who has served our country.

"If he served the country well, why he is being treated like this?"

She adds that she finds the 17 charges against Rosmah unreasonable.

An ardent supporter of Najib, the actress was also among supporters outside the courthouse in July.

They had heckled attorney-general Thomas who was about to give a press conference when Najib was first charged. 

11am: After more than three hours after Rosmah's and Najib's arrivals, Umno's Lokman is seen waiting alone. Many of the other supporters have left.

Meanwhile, media members are beginning to set up their equipment and police are also on standby for later press conferences. 

Rosmah's case: Bail set at RM2m, Nov 8 set for case mention

10.27am: Rosmah's case, Sessions Court – The Sessions Court adjourns after setting Nov 8 for its next mention.

The accused smiles and waves at the public gallery as she leaves the dock and heads towards the witness room.

Overall, Rosmah faces charges for depositing RM7.097 million into her personal account from 2013 until 2017. The charges in detail are:

  1. Depositing RM200,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account on Dec 4, 2013;
  2. Depositing RM100,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account on Dec 16, 2013;
  3. Depositing RM200,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account on Dec 23, 2013;
  4. Depositing RM100,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account on Jan 28, 2014;
  5. Depositing RM100,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account on Jan 29, 2014;
  6. Depositing RM200,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account on Feb 28, 2014;
  7. Depositing RM100,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account on March 14. 2014;
  8. Depositing RM100,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account on April 8, 2014;
  9. Depositing RM1.6 million from unlawful activities into her personal account in eight transactions between Sept 4, 2014, and Dec 22, 2014;
  10. Depositing RM3.85 million from unlawful activities into her personal account in 127 transactions between Jan 21, 2015, and Dec 12, 2015;
  11. Depositing RM510,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account in 87 transactions between Jan 28, 2016, and Nov 7, 2016;
  12. Depositing RM30,000 from unlawful activities into her personal account in five transactions between March 29, 2017, and June 8, 2017;
  13. Failing to declare RM500,000 deposited into her personal account between Dec 4, 2013, and Dec 23, 2013, as required by the Income Tax Act;
  14. Failing to declare RM2.2 million deposited into her personal account between Jan 28, 2014, and Dec 22, 2014, as required by the Income Tax Act;
  15. Failing to declare RM3.85 million deposited into her personal account between Jan 21, 2015, and Dec 12, 2015, as required by the Income Tax Act;
  16. Failing to declare RM510,000 deposited into her personal account between Jan 28, 2016, and Nov 7, 2016, as required by the Income Tax Act;
  17. Failing to declare RM30,000 deposited into her personal account between March 29, 2017, and June 8, 2017, as required by the Income Tax Act.

Rosmah's charge sheet can be viewed below:

She is being charged under Section 4(1) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (AMLATF).

If convicted, she faces a jail term of up to 15 years and a fine five times the amount of the illicit activity or RM5 million or whichever is higher, for each of the charges.


For the full story: read Mr and Mrs Najib's 49 charges


10.15am: Sessions Court – Judge Azura sets bail at RM2 million with two sureties. 

She also grants the conditions requested by the prosecution, which is for Rosmah to surrender her passports to the court, and to refrain from contacting any witnesses or potential witnesses. 

The RM500,000 must be paid today, while the balance must be paid by Oct 11. 

Sulaiman's appointment questioned

10.05am: Najib's case, High Court – Najib's counsel Havinderjit says he will make a formal application to see how Sulaiman was appointed.

Previously, Shafee had also asked the same of Gopal Sri Ram in another case.

Sulaiman, however, says it is under the Official Secrets Act. 

Justice Nazlan wants the issue to be discussed on Oct 31 during case management. 

With that, Najib's case ends for the day.

10am: Rosmah's case, Sessions Court – Countering Geethan's suggestion that the court considers Rosmah's station in life in deciding the bail quantum, Gopal argues that this works against the latter. 

He says the sum of the bail is consummate to the alleged offences and her station in life compounds its severity. 

"A person of her standing should not be in the dock in the first place," he says, adding that she would have the means to pay the bail. 

9.50am: Najib's case, High Court – Attention now turns to Sulaiman's appointment by the attorney-general leading this case.

Najib's lead defence counsel Muhammad Shafee Abdullah (photo above) asks for a copy of Sulaiman's letter of appointment.

He cites his own appointment when he led the prosecution against Anwar Ibrahim's 2015 sodomy conviction appeal, where the letter of appointment was handed to the court.

Shafee says in Anwar's case, DPP Mohd Hanafia Zakaria told the court of his (Shafee's) appointment.

Sulaiman objects to such a notion, pointing out that the prosecution was not asking for Shafee's practising certificate in representing Najib.

"I ask that the application (for the letter of appointment) be dismissed. We are not misleading the court as I have 10 DPPs behind me," he says.


For the full story: read Shafee wants Sulaiman to show proof of his appointment


Rosmah hit with 17 charges

9.50am: Rosmah's case, Sessions Court – Rosmah's lawyer Geethan Ram Vincent argues that the quantum of bail to be reduced, saying that it is large and out of proportion to previous cases including the recent money-laundering charges against Najib. 

He says Rosmah is prepared to surrender her passport, and there is a precedent that such condition, when imposed, lowers the quantum of the bail. 

Rosmah is also prepared to refrain from contacting any witnesses, he adds. 

The counsel also points out that Rosmah has attended MACC's questioning three times without fail when summoned, and has no previous criminal record. 

He suggests bail to be set at RM10,000 instead.

Judge sets Oct 31 for Najib's case management

9.40am: Najib's case, High Court – Lead prosecutor Sulaiman asks for another case management date as he says all parties don't seem interested in meeting today for a pre-trial conference. 

Justice Nazlan then fixes case management on Oct 31 at 3pm.

The judge asks whether all hardcopy documents would be served within two weeks from today, and the prosecution undertakes to do so.

9.40am: Rosmah's case, Sessions Court – Rosmah claims trial to all 17 money-laundering charges levelled against her. 

Lead prosecutor Gopal says these are non-bailable offences, so the court has discretion whether to grant bail or not.

He added that the principle should be that bail should not be granted if there is a risk of witness tampering.

Therefore, he asks bail to be set at RM10 million, with condition that Rosmah surrenders her passports and be forbidden to contact any witnesses. 

9.33am: Najib's case, High Court – The row between prosecution and defence over the documents surrendered by the former in several CDs is ongoing.

Sulaiman asks Shafee to keep up with the times.

"We should not follow what is done in 1942 when it is now 2018.

"We want a fair trial, we want the trial to proceed, and we are prepared to meet them today (in a pre-trial conference regarding the handing over of documents).

Shafee replies they cannot proceed with the pre-trial conference as the defence team cannot make sense of the documents.

"How can I go into the trial when the documents are unintelligible? Stick with the normal way, as has been done in thousands of cases.

"We are not asking special treatment. But give us (the case documents) in the proper format," he says.

Sulaiman interjects, and tells the defence to stop making insinuations, and "get on with the trial".

Charges being read out, Rosmah claims trial 

9.28am: Rosmah's case, Sessions Court – Ten charges of laundering illegal proceeds have been read out to Rosmah so far. She claims trial to all charges. 

The court interpreter reads the 11th charge. 

9.25am: Najib's case, High Court – Najib's counsel Havinderjit Singh states that the defence is not saying there is any sinister motive, but that they have applied for the documents in accordance to Section 51A.

Havinderjit says they will reply to the prosecution's request to transfer proceedings to Putrajaya.

Sulaiman then asks that this matter be dealt with in a pre-trial conference.

"We are willing to have a pre-trial conference today," he says.

To this, Havinderjit says they are prepared to meet today.


For the full story: read Prosecution wants Najib's case to be transferred to Putrajaya


Shafee, meanwhile says Section 51A is for pretrial discovery.

"On Aug 8, when they gave the CD-ROM, some documents could not be read. Why take the unusual step by giving a CD-ROM?

"Give us the proper documents in the proper format (physical copies). It is standard practice for the documents to be served to the lawyer and not the client. Many of the documents cannot be read in the CD format. Serve us a proper copy," he says. 

9:20am: Najib's case, High Court – Sulaiman says the prosecution has tried its best in regards to the documents, and there are no underhanded tactics involved.

He adds that the prosecution is strictly following the law.

"We have asked for a pre-trial conference but there is total silence by (Shafee)."

He also says that they have applied for Najib's trial to be held in Putrajaya and not here.

"The request is made to the chief judge (of Malaya) as there is a bigger space in Putrajaya," Sulaiman says. 

9.20am: Rosmah's case, Sessions Court – The first charge on money laundering, allegedly committed on Dec 5, 2015, is read out. 

Rosmah claims trial to the first charge. 

Both courts convenes

9.17am: Rosmah's case, Sessions Court –Sessions court convenes as Judge Azura Alwi enters.

Rosmah is brought into the dock. Those in attendance stand up to bow to Justice Azura. 

MACC deputy commissioner Azam Baki arrives and is seated at the public gallery. 

9.07am: Najib's case, High Court – Lead prosecutor Sulaiman Abdullah introduces all the parties.

He says the prosecution will raise three issues, among them, the serving of documents under Section 51A of the Criminal Procedure Code.

Section 51A requires the prosecution to reveal information and disclose documents that would form part of its case to the defence before the trial commences.

Sulaiman says the prosecution has tried to do so but could not.

Najib's counsel Shafee then says that on last Aug 8, Najib was given a CD-ROM containing the documents.

He adds that the prosecution handed another CD-ROM yesterday as Najib was visiting Rosmah.

"This is not proper as they have to hand in documents and not CD-ROMs," the lawyer tells the court. 

9.05am: Rosmah's case, Sessions Court – A court interpreter asks if those in attendance are ready, and announces that proceedings will begin at 9.15am.

Lawyers for both parties are already present, including Gopal Sri Ram (photo) who is leading the prosecution, and K Kumaraendran who is leading Rosmah's defence team.

Najib, Rosmah arrives in good spirits 

9.06am: Najib's case, High Court – Najib enters the courtroom from the witness room.

The court interpreter advises all parties to get ready and announces Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali is presiding. 

8.52am: Najib's lawyers are slowly entering the courtroom, led by Muhammad Shafee and Havinderjit Singh.

The former premier is believed to be waiting in the High Court witness room.

8.41am: Kuala Lumpur Court Complex – Najib arrives not long after his wife does.

Accompanied by a bodyguard, he steps out from a black car, smartly dressed in a light blue shirt and dark blue coat. 

He, too, looks calm and smiles as he enters the courthouse.

Meanwhile, Umno supreme council member Lokman Adam Mohd Noor is waiting outside the complex.

He says he is here to show support to both Rosmah and Najib.

He wants to speak with the media but is stopped by the police due to Najib's arrival.

8.30am: Rosmah arrives at the court complex. Dressed in an orange baju kurung, she is accompanied by her lawyer K Kumaraendran.

Media and members of the public immediately rush forward and surround her.

She is being protected by police and looks calm, smiling and waving as she is led into the court complex.

Her supporters yell out "Datin, Datin!" 

Rosmah on the way to court

8.20am: Putrajaya – The Star reports that Rosmah is en route to the court complex, having left the MACC headquarters at 7.45am.

She is reportedly travelling in a black Toyota Alphard and is being escorted by police and MACC officers. 

8.20am: Kuala Lumpur Court Complex – Meanwhile at the Sessions Court, media personnel are allowed to enter Judge Azura's court.

Court staff are seen busy bringing in extra benches into the public gallery. The first row is reserved for MACC personnel, while the second row is reserved for members of Rosmah's family.

As with the High Court, the last two rows are reserved for media personnel. 

8.19am: Najib's supporters are already gathering in front of the complex.

One of the supporters, identified only as Rash, is seen wearing a bandana with a Najib sticker on it and with the words "stop the misuse of AMLA (Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001)".

Police ask him to take it off. He says he is here to protest peacefully but removes the scarf anyway.

The latter says more supporters will come later.

8.15am – Journalists are finally allowed to enter High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan's court.

Already in court are – appointed prosecutor Sulaiman, and the rest of the prosecuting team, including head of prosecution Manoj Kurup and deputy Ishak Mohd Salleh, from the Attorney-General's Chambers.

The first two rows of the bench in the public gallery in Najib's case are reserved for family members while the last two benches are for the media. 

The media waits

8am: Kuala Lumpur Court Complex – The proceeding for Najib's case will be on the fifth floor of the court complex, while Rosmah's will take place on the second floor at the Sessions Court.

Prosecutors for Najib's case, meanwhile, are already seated inside the courtroom, having entered through a side entrance.

The prosecutors', or DPP's office is also located on the fifth floor. 

7am – Media personnel, both local and international, have begun queueing up to obtain passes to be able to enter the courtrooms to cover the two cases, as limited passes are being given out.

They are forming two long rows, one for those covering Rosmah's case and another for Najib's, under the watchful eye of up to 10 security personnel.

Rosmah will be represented by lawyers K Kumaraendran and Geethan Ram Vincent.

Najib, meanwhile, will be represented by Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, the latter himself subject to charges related to money-laundering and making false statements.

Former federal court judge Gopal Sri Ram is expected to lead the prosecution for Rosmah's case, while this is to be the first appearance for former Bar chairperson and senior lawyer Sulaiman Abdullah.

Sulaiman, like Gopal, was appointed by attorney-general Tommy Thomas to lead the case.

6.45am – It is set to be a busy day for former first couple Najib Abdul Razak and wife Rosmah Mansor at the Kuala Lumpur Court Complex on Jalan Duta, as both are set to make appearances in different courts.

Najib will be brought to the High Court for the case mention for his abuse of power, criminal breach of trust and money-laundering charges.

Rosmah, meanwhile, will be in court for the first time where she is expected to be slapped with some 17 money-laundering charges in relation to 1MDB.

Rosmah, who was detained last night at Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) headquarters after several hours of questioning, is set to be brought to the court complex at 8am.

Malaysiakini is bringing live the court proceedings inside and outside the court complex.

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