Guan Eng Trial Key Witness Claims Suffering Palpitation When Grilled
Consortium Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd (CZC) senior executive Zarul Ahmad Mohd Zulkifli claimed his doctor diagnosed him with high blood pressure and palpitation.
The key prosecution witness said this when he tried to get a break from intense cross-examination by defence counsel during today’s corruption trial against former Penang chief minister Lim Guan Eng on the RM6.3 billion Penang Undersea Tunnel Project.
While being grilled by the accused’s lawyer Gobind Singh Deo, Zarul (above) tried to get excused from the trial held at Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court.
The defence counsel was cross-examining the 23rd prosecution witness on why Zarul had given RM19 million to businessperson G Gnanaraja.
However, during proceedings before judge Azura Alwi, Zarul did not answer and kept reiterating he just wanted his money back.
Previously, the witness claimed he paid RM19 million to Gnanaraja - an alleged close associate of then prime minister Najib Abdul Razak - to deliver bribes to the then Penang chief minister.
Lim Guan EngOn April 3, 2019, Gnanaraja was charged with deceiving Zarul to pay him RM19 million in relation to the project at the Shah Alam Sessions Court.
Zarul: Your Honour, I need to be excused, I do not feel well.
Gobind: You came to court (this morning).
Zarul: The deputy public prosecutor asked me to come to court.
Azura: What did the doctor diagnose (during the checkup yesterday)?
Zarul: My (blood) pressure is up, my heart is palpitating, he (doctor) asked me to see a specialist.
Gobind: If you need medical assistance, I have no objection, just let me finish (my cross-examination).
At this juncture, Azura called for a short break before resuming.
When proceedings resumed, deputy public prosecutor Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin said they have handed a copy of the doctor’s letter to the court in regard to the witness’ health condition.
Gobind: Are you okay to proceed?
Zarul: Can I take a break today? I really do not feel well.
Azura then adjourned proceedings to tomorrow morning.
Former finance minister Lim is on trial over four charges.
One charge, framed under Section 16(A)(a) and Section 23 of the MACC Act, alleged him of using his position as then Penang chief minister for the gratification of RM3.3 million as inducement for helping a company belonging to Zarul to secure the island state's RM6.3 billion undersea tunnel project.
The offence was allegedly perpetrated at the Penang Chief Minister's Office, 28th floor at Komtar in George Town, Penang, between January 2011 and August 2017.
Under Section 23(1) of the MACC Act, the offence is punishable with imprisonment of up to 20 years and a fine of not less than five times the value of the gratification, or RM10,000, whichever is higher.
The second charge, also under Section 16(A)(a), states that Lim, in his capacity as the Penang chief minister then, solicited from Zarul bribes amounting to 10 percent of the profits to be earned by the company as gratification for helping the company secure the project.
The offence was allegedly committed near The Gardens Hotel, Lingkaran Syed Putra, Mid Valley City, Kuala Lumpur, between 12.30am and 2am in March 2011.
The said law provides for imprisonment of up to 20 years and a fine of not less than five times the value of the gratification, or RM10,000, whichever is higher. - Mkini
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