KUALA LUMPUR: The long police search of Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s residence in Jalan Langgak Duta has caused mental distress and anguish to the family and constitutes harassment.
In a statement, Najib’s lawyer Datuk Harpal Singh Grewal said this had been exacerbated by efforts by police to drill into a safe which had not been opened for 20 years, causing the family to have no peace and quiet.
The presence of 50 to 60 policemen on the premises had also caused the family distress as it had interfered with their sahur and fast.
Explaining what had happened on Wednesday night, Harpal said when he arrived at the house, he had been told the reason for the raid, of which he duly informed his client.
He said in the statement, which he had been instructed by Najib to release, that his client had agreed to extend full cooperation to the Commercial Crime Investigation Department policemen.
Harpal said the policemen broke up into groups to perform their search and had acted in a professional manner “save and except for the events after 5am”.
Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s lawyer Harpal Singh Grewal seen outside the former prime minister’s residence in Jalan Langgak Duta. Pic by MOHD YUSNI ARIFFIN
He said several boxes containing personal items which had been brought from the prime minister’s official residence after Najib had vacated it were opened. These items were then packed into several boxes.
“Although the police team said they would be leaving after packing the last box, there were still a number of police personnel outside the residence and remained there till the early hours of the morning. At about 8.30am, some of the (police) proceeded to a room located on the first floor and decided to drill open a safe which had remained locked for two decades as the key had been misplaced.”
As of 7pm, the drilling was still going on and “there is absolutely no peace and quiet” at the house, said Harpal.
“The search conducted in the premises and the items seized this far would seem of insignificant value and the continued presence of policemen in his residence and the drilling of the old safe strongly suggests unwarranted harassment Datuk Seri Najib’s family members, staff and others mental distress and anguish.
“More importantly, the raid was conducted on the eve of the holy month of Ramadan and Datuk Seri Najib’s family and staff were denied the right to properly conduct their religious obligations prior to the opening of fast on the first day of Ramadan.
“In addition, the ongoing cordoning off the road has caused a severe inconvenience to his neighbours who are using the same road on a regular basis.”
Harpal said Najib had at the outset already indicated to all present that he was prepared and willing to extend his fullest cooperation to the relevant authorities but the harassment had continued for hours.
“Nothing meaningful has come from the search and seizure of what would appear to be insignificant personal items.”
The police team had arrived around 10.15pm on Wednesday in more than 15 vehicles, including a truck.
Simultaneous raids were also carried out at three apartments belonging to the members of the family at the Pavilion Residences in Bukit Bintang.
Federal Commercial Crime Investigation Department director Datuk Seri Amar Singh had confirmed the raids but did not elaborate as to what it was related to.
He would only say that a search for documents and other evidence was being conducted.--Report by Safeek Affendy Razali, Nor Azizah Mokhtar, Kalbana Perimbanayagam, Mohd Hasbi Sidek and Nurul Hidayah Bahaudin © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd