Najib’s 1MDB trial gets more hearing dates, up until August 2020

Ida Lim
Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court December 13, 2019. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 13 — The High Court today fixed additional hearing dates until next August for Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s corruption trial involving 25 charges over the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal.

High Court judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah today maintained the trial dates that had been fixed from January to April next year for the case, but added on more dates from May to August.

The tentative trial dates previously fixed are from January 7 to 9, 13 to 16, 20 to 23, February 3 to 6, 10 to 13, 17 to 20, March 9 to 12, 16 to 19, 23 to 26, 30 to 31 and April 1 to 2.

The new dates added today are from May 4 to 6, June 1 to 4, 8 to 11, July 20 to 23, 27 to 30, and the whole month of August except for Fridays.

The judge also fixed January 7 for case management to finalise next year’s trial dates, due to possible overlaps in hearing dates with other ongoing trials that Najib is facing.

For the 1MDB trial involving 25 charges, the hearing had kicked off on August 28 and had gone on for more than 30 days with nine prosecution witnesses having testified so far.

When the 1MDB trial continues next year, Najib’s lawyers are expected to resume cross-examination of 1MDB former CEO Datuk Shahrol Azral Ibrahim Halmi who is the ninth prosecution witness.

As for Najib’s separate corruption case involving former 1MDB unit SRC International Sdn Bhd’s RM42 million funds, it is now at the defence stage with Najib testifying as the first defence witness.

The prosecution is expected to continue cross-examining Najib next week, which are the last scheduled trial dates this year for the SRC International case.

In the third case of Najib that has gone on trial involving allegations of tampering with the Auditor-General’s final audit report on 1MDB, the case has been heard for six days since trial started on November 18.

There are no more scheduled trial dates this year for the 1MDB audit report tampering case where six prosecution witnesses have testified so far.

The 1MDB audit report tampering case’s next case management date is January 9, with tentative trial dates fixed on January 13 to 16, March 9 to 11, April 6 to 9, April 13 to 16.

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