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Najib withdraws discovery application in US$1.18 bil SRC suit

5 September 2022

KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 5): Jailed former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on Monday (Sept 5) withdrew his discovery application in the US$1.18 billion civil suit filed by SRC International Sdn Bhd.

This came after his lawyers from Messrs Shafee & Co received the bundle of documents that are needed for the hearing from SRC’s solicitors from Rosli Dahlan Saravana Partnership.

The former premier had filed the discovery application in the High Court on June 9, and it had been fixed for hearing on Monday.

Following the withdrawal, judge Datuk Ahmad Fairuz Zainol Abidin struck out the application and made no order as to costs.

Ahmad Fairuz fixed Oct 17 for further case management to give pre-trial directions, and asked both parties to file a chronology of events and summary of the case by then.

Najib was represented by lawyers Muhammad Farhan Shafee and Alaistair Norman, while Syafinaz Vani and Lisa Yong appeared for SRC, a former subsidiary of 1Malaysia Development Bhd and currently owned by Minister of Finance Incorporated.

SRC filed the suit in May last year, seeking a declaration from the court that Najib is liable to account for the company's losses of US$1.18 billion due to their breach of duties and trust.

The amount is said to be from the Retirement Fund Inc (KWAP)'s RM4 billion loans that were given to SRC between 2011 and 2012, which were channelled overseas and unrecovered to date.

Former SRC managing director Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil is also named as a defendant in the suit. Nik Faisal remains at large and he was last known to be in Indonesia.

Last November, the court entered a judgement in default against Nik Faisal for his non-appearance after the suit was filed. A judgement in default can be entered if the person named in a suit fails to respond.

SRC had previously dropped other defendants from the civil suit, including its former chairman Tan Sri Ismee Ismail, former directors Datuk Shahrol Azral Ibrahim Halmi, Datuk Suboh Md Yasin, Datuk Mohammed Azhar Osman Khairuddin and Datuk Che Abdullah @ Rashidi Che Omar.

Najib, 69, is presently serving a 12-year jail term after the Federal Court affirmed his conviction and sentence on seven counts of abuse of power, criminal breach of trust and money laundering related to SRC.

Last February, Ahmad Fairuz refused Najib’s application for a stay of the hearing of the civil suit pending the outcome of his SRC appeal.

Edited by S Kanagaraju

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