ROSMAH TRIAL | Rosmah Mansor's defence team today attempted to discredit prosecution witness Mahdzir Khalid by accusing him of trying to "fix up" the accused to escape graft charges.
During cross-examination, defence counsel Jagjit Singh established that Mahdzir had engaged lawyer C Vigneshkumar in 2018, who wrote to the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC) in November that year.
That letter, according to Jagjit, was an attempt to "broker" a deal, to which Mahdzir repeatedly disagreed with.
Jagjit then produced a letter from Mahdzir's legal team to the AGC, which contained the following:
"Our client has also indicated he is willing to testify against the prime mover of this scheme should he be called as a prosecution witness.
"It is our humble view that his proposed evidence would further strengthen the case against the prime mover of this case. Our client sincerely hopes that he is given the opportunity."
Mahdzir agreed that the letter was authentic, but struggled to explain what was meant by "prime mover".
Jagjit: Who do you mean by "prime mover"?
Mahdzir: (Long pause)
Jagjit: Can you answer the question?
Mahdzir: I can't answer.
Jagjit: You are refusing to answer this question because the letter was crafted specifically on your instruction. Agree?
Mahdzir: I discussed (the content) with my lawyer.
Unrelenting, Jagjit went on to suggest that "prime mover" either referred to Rosmah's former aide Rizal Mansor or Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd managing director Saidi Abang Samsudin. Mahdzir disagreed.
Jagjit also asked Mahdzir to explain what was meant by "proposed evidence", to which the latter did not elaborate on.
Jagjit: (Your letter) said "proposed evidence would further strengthen the case". Hence, you had bad intentions. You wanted to provide evidence to fix up the prime minister. Agree?
Jagjit: I put it to you, your evidence in your witness statement is the proposed evidence to fix up Rosmah. Agree?
During re-examination by DPP Ahmad Akram Gharib, Mahdzir said the words "prime mover" and "proposed evidence" were the words of his lawyer.
Mahdzir also testified that the contents of the letter were never shown to him.
Following this, Mahdzir was released from the witness stand, although he may be called back for further re-examination by lead prosecutor Gopal Sri Ram on Monday.
Rosmah is facing three charges for soliciting and receiving bribes for Jepak Holdings and its agent to secure a solar power project for schools in rural Sarawak.
Mahdzir had previously testified that then prime minister Najib Abdul Razak, Rizal and Rosmah had "pressured" him into awarding the RM1.25 billion project to Jepak.