RM1.1mil compound payment not tantamount to guilty plea, says defence
The legal team for Pontian MP Ahmad Maslan has sought to clear the air that the settlement of the RM1.1 million compound payment is not tantamount to a guilty plea.
(FMT) – This comes after Bernama reported that the Umno secretary-general was freed from charges of money laundering and giving false statements to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) this morning after paying the compound.
According to a statement issued by Messrs Shahrul Hamidi & Haziq, Ahmad had paid the RM1.1 million compound as agreed to by the prosecution and the defence.
The law firm said the settlement process also had nothing to do with political or external factors and did not involve any individual or agency other than the investigation agency and prosecution agency involved.
“This settlement is not tantamount to a guilty plea.
“It was done according to the law and has gone through a transparent process. This settlement is a win-win solution for all parties,” it said.
It added that Ahmad received financial assistance and loans from friends to settle the compound.
Ahmad had previously claimed trial to charges of failing to declare some RM2 million he received from Najib Razak to the Inland Revenue Board (LHDN).
He was alleged to have violated Section 113(1)(a) of the Income Tax Act 1967 by not stating his real income on the RM2 million he received from the former prime minister in the income tax return form for assessment year 2013.
He was alleged to have received the money, believed to be proceeds of illegal activities, through a cheque from AmIslamic Bank Bhd dated Nov 27, 2013, which he personally cashed the same day.
The charge, framed under Section 4(1)(a) of the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (Amla), provides for a maximum fine of RM5 million, or imprisonment for up to five years, or both, if found guilty.
Ahmad was also accused of giving false statements to MACC when questioned by investigating officer Mohd Zairi Zainal at the media conference room of the Parliament building here between 2.45pm and 3.30pm on July 4, 2019.
The charge, framed under Section 32(8)(c) of Amla, provides for a maximum fine of RM3 million, or imprisonment for up to five years, or both, if found guilty.