Key Prosecution Witness In Guan Eng Trial On Mc
Consortium Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd (CZC) senior executive Zarul Ahmad Mohd Zulkifli is on medical leave and unable to attend today’s corruption trial against former Penang chief minister Lim Guan Eng.
Yesterday during a cross-examination by the accused’s legal team, the key prosecution witness claimed he was diagnosed with high blood pressure and heart palpitations.
During proceedings before the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court, deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib informed that the 23rd prosecution witness was not feeling well.
“Zarul (above) informed us this morning that he was given (medical) leave for four days from yesterday,” the prosecutor said.
Today was initially set for defence counsel Gobind Singh Deo to resume cross-examination of Zarul.
Open-court proceedings before trial judge Azra Alwi then continued with the 30th prosecution witness Tan Gaik Eng, who is the director of a land valuation firm.
Yesterday, Zarul was cross-examined over his claim that he paid RM19 million to businessperson G Gnanaraja - an alleged close associate of then prime minister Najib Abdul Razak - to deliver bribes to then Penang chief minister Lim in relation to the island’s RM6.3 billion undersea tunnel project.
Businessperson G GnanarajaOn 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 testified that he paid RM19 million to Gnanaraja after the latter threatened him with a money laundering charge.
The witness claimed the money was paid to Gnanaraja in order to help settle MACC’s probe against him (Zarul) in relation to the project.
Previously, Zarul claimed in his testimony of being shocked that Lim in 2011 asked for 10 percent of future profits in the project, that the accused received a RM100,000 bribe with a smile in 2013, and that the “Malay spirit” helped him overcome immense pressure from the MACC probe into the case.
Zarul also testified that after being remanded for 11 days by MACC in January 2018, he then lied to the media about being pressured by individuals with purported links to BN.
Lawyer Gobind Singh Deo and Bagan MP Lim Guan EngFour charges
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 that he used his position as Penang chief minister for the gratification of RM3.3 million as inducement for helping a company belonging to Zarul to secure the RM6.3 billion undersea tunnel project.
The offence was allegedly perpetrated at the Penang Chief Minister's Office 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), stated that Lim, in his capacity as the Penang chief minister, 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 in 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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