I Will Not Tolerate Such Actions Any Longer Says High Court Judge Over Shafee S Absence
The High Court judge in the trial of Datuk Seri Najib Razak was not pleased with the absence of the former Prime Minister’s lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah. - NSTP/FATHIL ASRI.KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court judge in the trial of Datuk Seri Najib Razak was not pleased with the absence of the former Prime Minister's lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah.Judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah was also not amused with the senior lawyer being absent, stating that he could not tolerate such actions any longer.
Shafee was not around during the morning session where former Aminvestment Bank managing director Kok Tuck Cheong testified as the 40th prosecution witness.
He was seen entering the courtroom about 11am before Sequerah adjourned the proceedings to 2.30pm.
The drama unfolded when counsel Wan Aizuddin Wan Mohammed, who appeared for Najib, asked the court to reserve their cross-examination of the witness.
Wan Aizuddin informed the court that Shafee was attending another case before judicial commissioner Datuk Azhar Abdul Hamid.
Sequerah, however, rejected Wan Aizuddin's application and said that he could not go beyond this.
"This trial by installments over and over again, with witness reserves, I have accommodated as much as I can.
"From now on, if Shafee cannot do the cross-examination, you (Wan Aizuddin) have to step up.
"You all (Shafee & Co.) have a big team and you (Wan Aizuddin) are more than capable of doing it as you are familiar with the facts of the case.
"This is how the trial will be run from now on. In the future, if Shafee is not available (and no-one to do cross-examination) I will take it as the cross-examination as being done and continue with re-examination," he said.
Wan Aizuddin replied he would inform the matter to his boss (Shafee) and will act accordingly.
Najib, 69, is facing 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 former prime minister is now serving a 12-year jail sentence at the Kajang Prison after being found guilty of all seven charges relating to the misappropriation of RM42 million of SRC International Sdn Bhd funds. - NST
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