Ex-1MDB CEO Mohd Hazem to testify on Monday
0 month ago, 10-Sep-2020
KUALA LUMPUR: Former 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) chief executive officer Mohd Hazem Abdul Rahman will be testifying as the 10th prosecution witness in Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razaks RM2.3 billion 1MDB graft trial on Monday.
This followed the ruling made by High Court Judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah that the alleged hearsay passages of Mohd Hazems witness statement were still admissible in the ongoing trial.
Justice Sequerah said he would decide whether these passages constitute hearsay at the end of prosecutions case.
This court rules that the decision to determine whether certain passages constitute hearsay to be suspended until the end of the case, he said.
The judge also said that the court was not in a position to determine the admissibility of the witness statement as other evidence will be introduced in the case, which may render the passages being objected.
If I were to exclude the passages, the prosecution may be deprived of the chance to introduce the evidence in court.
If the passages fall within the hearsay rules. the evidence will be excluded from the court findings altogether, said the judge adding that Mohd Hazems witness statement will be admitted as evidence entirely at this juncture.
Mohd Hazem was scheduled to take the witness stand last Monday.
However, Najibs lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah made an oral application to drop 24 pages from Mohd Hazems 118-page witness statement which the defence alleged to have contained hearsay.
The disputed statement outlined that fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho or Jho Low had told him (Mohd Hazem) the sovereign wealth fund was built to administer funds into Umno.
The prosecution, led by former Federal Court judge Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram, however, objected to the application and urged that the witness should have read the statement in totality as it formed parts of the transaction.
Mohd Hazem was the 1MDB chief operating officer before he took over as the chief executive officer on March 25, 2013. He stepped down from the post in 2015.
Najib, 67, faces four charges of using his position to obtain bribes totalling RM2.3 billion from 1MDB funds and 21 charges of money laundering involving the same amount.
The hearing before Justice Sequerah continues on Monday. Bernama
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