Ex-AG’s bid to dismiss malicious prosecution suit delayed following DPP’s murder
(Malay Mail Online) – Former Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail’s bid along with 10 others to strike out a suit for malicious prosecution and misconduct has been postponed, to enable slain prosecutor Kevin Anthony Morais’ estate to take his stead.
Earlier today, the Federal Court heard from defence lawyer Tan Sri Cecil Abraham of the need to substitute the late Morais with his estate due to his recent murder.
Cecil, the lawyer acting for the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), was also said to have asked the Federal Court to give an indefinite stay of proceedings in the lawsuit filed by senior lawyer Rosli Dahlan (pic).
“Rosli’s counsel, Chetan Jethwani and Parvinder Kaur, informed the court that they have been instructed to express Rosli’s deepest sympathy and condolences to Kevin’s family over this tragic event.
“Chetan also said that Rosli will give as much time as needed by the defence to sort these issues out,” the statement made available to Malay Mail Online said.
The Federal Court panel headed by Chief Justice Tan Sri Zulkifli Makinuddin and comprising Tan Sri Abdull Hamid Embong and Tan Sri Ahmad Maarof then granted a limited stay until November 26 to allow for the defence team to make the substitution.
The Federal Court was initially scheduled to hear Gani’s leave application for appeal against a previous dismissal of his bid to strike out Rosli’s lawsuit.
On April 1, the Court of Appeal in dismissing then Attorney-General Gani’s bid to strike out two malicious prosecution lawsuits by Rosli and a former senior police officer, unanimously found the government lawyer’s application to have “no merit”.
Among other things, the appellate court noted that Gani and several others sued did not file statements of defence or deny the allegations of malicious action.
Gani had similarly failed in his striking out application at the Kuala Lumpur High Court, when Judicial Commissioner Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera ruling on April 11, 2014 that a civil servant who holds public office cannot escape lawsuits when it involves power abuse allegations.
Vazeer Alam had told the country’s then top lawyer and other prosecutors that they do not have “absolute immunity” from lawsuits.
In November 2013, Gani was sued along with a list of other defendants in two separate cases by former top police officer Datuk Ramli Yusuff and senior lawyer Rosli Dahlan for alleged malicious prosecution, among other things.
Ramli filed the lawsuit against Gani and 11 others on November 1, 2013, claiming at least RM128 million in damages for alleged malicious and false investigations and maliciously bringing him to court over alleged graft. He has since been acquitted of all charges against him.
Rosli sued Gani and 10 others in November 22, 2013, claiming over RM47 million for conspiring to arrest and charge him in court in 2007 over an alleged failure to declare his assets.
Rosli has also been acquitted of all charges against him.
Rosli’s suit was filed on November 22 against 11 respondents including Gani, former Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Musa Hassan, current MACC chief Tan Sri Abu Kassim Mohamed, former Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) head of prosecutions Datuk Nordin Hassan and MACC director of prosecutions Datuk Abdul Razak Musa.
Three MACC officers — Morais, Chew Kam Soon, Saiful Ezral Ariffin — and the IGP on behalf of the police force, the MACC and the government were also sued in the same suit.
The MACC replaced ACA as the country’s anti-graft body in 2009.
Morais, 55, was seconded to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission nearly 10 years ago to aid its prosecution division, but returned to the Attorney-General’s Chambers in July as deputy head of its appellate and trial division.
Last Saturday, police confirmed that a body found in a concrete-filled drum in Subang Jaya matched the DNA sample for Morais, who was reported missing on September 4 and last seen leaving his condominium for work.