High Court issues arrest warrant for ex-spy chief absent from case management

G. Prakash
Former Malaysia External Intelligence Organisation director-general Hasanah Abdul Hamid failed to appear in court for case management proceedings this morning. — Picture by Miera Zulyana

KUALA LUMPUR, May 24 — The High Court today issued an arrest warrant for the former director-general of the Malaysia External Intelligence Organisation (MEIO) Datuk Hasanah Abdul Hamid, who was charged with criminal breach of trust (CBT) involving government funds totalling RM50.4 million after she failed to appear in court for case management today.

The arrest warrant was issued by Justice Collin Lawrence Sequerah after deputy public prosecutor Mahadhir Mohd Khairudin made the application against Hasanah, 61, for her absence without giving any reason.

“The accused is absent. (Prior to this) she was released on bail in two sureties, but neither she nor her two bailers are present here today and there is no instruction from the court in relation to the absence. I apply for an arrest warrant to be issued,” said Mahadhir.

Hasanah’s lawyer Nur Aifaa Mohd Zain, however, apologised to the court and said that Hasanah was absent because she (Nur Aifaa), as the lawyer,  failed to inform the accused of the proceedings today due to a misunderstanding.

She said she thought there would be no proceedings today because the trial date for the case, which will commence on February 3, 2020, was fixed at the April 17 proceedings.

“As the Iawyer, I apologise for my mistake,” she said.

Justice Sequerah fixed June 26 for mention of the arrest warrant and notice to the bailers.

Hasanah was charged in her capacity as a civil servant, that is as the director-general of the Reseach Division in the Prime Minister’s Department, with committing CBT involving US$12.1 million (RM50.4 million) belonging to the government between April 30 and May 9 last year at the office of the director-general, Research Division, Prime Minister's Department, Putrajaya.

The charge against her was framed under Section 409 of the Penal Code which provides for a maximum jail term of 20 years and whipping and fine, upon conviction. ― Bernama

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