MACC could not find evidence that Najib knew about SRC money in his account, Dzulkifli tells court

(The Star) – The High Court heard that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) had suggested for Datuk Seri Najib Razak to be charged under Section 403 of the Penal Code over the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scandal but it did not materialise as there was insufficient evidence to back up the case.

Former chief commissioner Tan Sri Dzulkifli Ahmad testified that the MACC also suggested an alternative charge under Section 23 of the MACC Act 2009.

Section 403 of the Penal Code touches on offences of criminal misappropriation of property while Section 23 of the MACC Act is on abuse of power.

“The MACC was of the opinion that there was no case of criminal breach of trust, ” Dzulkifli said when examined by lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah at the SRC International Sdn Bhd trial here Tuesday (March 10).

The witness, however, said former attorney general Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali told the MACC to continue its investigation.

“Apandi thought there were two important elements for further investigation; whether Najib had knowledge that the money that went into his account was SRC International money and whether he had instructed anybody to move the money into his account, ” Dzulkifli said.

The witness told the court that the MACC did continue the investigation upon Apandi’s direction.

“However, the MACC could not answer the questions (relating to the two elements that were raised) and informed (the Attorney General’s Chambers) that there were no statements to show Najib gave the directive to move monies into his account, ” he said.

The witness said the investigation papers (IPs) were pushed back to the AGC and it was up to the AG to decide.

Shafee: What happened after the AG got the IPs?

Dzulkifli: It was decided as an “NFA” (No Further Action).

Shafee: For which case?

Dzulkifli: For both SRC International and 1MDB.

The witness said it was particularly important to be able to prove the element of knowledge as required under Section 403 of the Penal Code.

“MACC itself made a statement that the RM2.6bil was a donation. I was together with the MACC team that went to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to verify the four letters by Prince Saud Abdulaziz who confirmed the donation.

“So the donation issue, for me, was a done deal, ” he added.

Dzulkifli was part of the team that went to Riyadh to record the statement of Prince Saud on Nov 29,2015.

Najib is facing seven charges – three for criminal breach of trust, one for abuse of power and three for money laundering involving SRC International funds totalling RM42mil.

The hearing before Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali continues on Wednesday (March 11).

The same witness is expected to be cross-examined by lead prosecutor Datuk V. Sithambaram.