Bar Council: Give us more evidence

Bar Council president Lim Chee Wee has urged anyone with more facts and proof to come forward in regard to the ‘Tan Sri lawyer’ and son who have been accused of helping draft the SD2. 

Teoh El Sen, FMT

The Bar Council has expressed its concern over new developments that revealed that a senior lawyer and his son were allegedly behind the drafting of the second statutory declaration (SD2) by private investigator P Balasubramaniam.

(The SD2 reversed the first statutory declaration which implicated Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak in the murder of the Mongolioan national Altantuya Shaariibuu.)

However, the Bar Council stopped short of declaring that it will immediately launch an investigation, saying that more facts and evidence are needed before the disciplinary board can act.

“The Bar Council views these circumstances seriously and invites those who have the facts and evidence to come forward openly and officially and, if there is compelling evidence of any professional misconduct, to lodge such evidence together with a complaint immediately with the disciplinary board,” its president Lim Chee Wee said.

The disciplinary board is an independent body statutorily established and tasked with the responsibility of investigating professional conduct and disciplining of advocates and solicitors.

Lim said that while investigation, if there is any, will be rightfully conducted by the disciplinary board, the Bar Council “[will] work together” with the board.

“As it stands now, the facts are not clear. We look at what Deepak Jaikishan and Balasubramaniam have said: have they ever alleged that the lawyer represented the private investigator? We have to go through this with a forensic eye,” he said

Lim said that while the Bar is closely monitoring the situation, he lamented that until today, the identities of the said lawyer (s) have not been established, as a video recording of an interview with Deepak bleeped out the names.

Unnecessary speculation

“We have also received yesterday a letter from [lawyer-activist] Haris Ibrahim requesting the Bar Council to launch an investigation to identify the lawyer (s) concerned, when it appears to us that Haris may know the identity of these lawyers.”

“This has caused unnecessary speculation and confusion,” he added.

Lim also said that the most important person in a complaint against a legal practitioner should be the victim himself, but the apparent “victim” has yet to come forward.

“Who is the victim here? Has the victim Balasubramaniam raised concerns about anything at this point? We need more facts, either from the victim or somebody else.”

“People must come forward with the facts. I’m not going on a fishing expedition… knocking on people’s office or doors for facts. This is not a case of clients money disappearing.

“This information is revealed by someone whose own background is cause for concern,” said Lim, referring to Deepak.

Asked if the Bar Council is reluctant to act, he said: “We cannot say we are not doing anything. Those with more facts, come forward. We will do what is necessary. Even at this time, we will look into this further if necessary,” he said.

Lim said the disciplinary board’s job is to determine if there is cause for investigation, but this process will not be disclosed to the public and statements will only come from the Bar Council on the matter.