Judge rejects bid to include Anwar as defendant

The High Court dismisses businessman’s application saying it’s too late to include Anwar Ibrahim in his case.

(Free Malaysia Today) – The High Court today dismissed an application by a businessman to include former deputy prime minister Anwar Ibrahim in a suit involving a failed acquisition process in 1998.

In her verdict, Justice Hadhariah Syed Ismail told the legal counsel for businessman, Low Thiam Hoe, that the proposed amendment had come too late in the course of the trial.

In 1997, Hong Leong Finance Bhd filed a suit against Low, Mekuritek Sdn Bhd and Arus Murni Sdn Bhd over non-payment of loans amounting to RM445 million.

The loans were given to the parties in a bid to acquire financial institution, Kewangan Bersatu Bhd.

Anwar was serving as the finance minister at that point of time and one of Arus Murni’s directors, Mohd Faiz Abdullah, was purported to be Anwar’s speech writer.

Each defendant was sued for over RM28 million plus interest for the non-repayment of the loans.

On why the case was being heard now when it was filed in 1998, the lawyer serving for all three defendants, D Paramalingam, said Hong Leong had not pursued the matter since 2005.

“All of a sudden, the plaintiff (Hong Leong) decided to proceed with the case,” said Paramalingam.

The hearing of the case would resume on March 28.