Charges against Najib not politically motivated, says prosecution

(The Star) – The charges against former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak in the SRC International Sdn Bhd were not politically motivated, says Datuk V. Sithambaram.

The ad hoc prosecutor, who led the team, said the prosecution was guided by the investigation papers in the case involving the misappropriation of RM42mil from SRC International, a subsidiary of 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB).

“As prosecutors, we have the IP (investigation papers). There is no politics there. These are facts, cold hard facts. We have to interpret those facts and we presented it to the court,” he said in a press conference after the proceedings ended.

Sithambaram said at the appellate stage, the SRC International case has gone through two courts, with hundreds of pages of judgment written.

In Wednesday’s (Dec 8) decision on Najib’s appeal, Justice Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil delivered a 316-page judgment via Zoom in a hybrid proceeding.

The judges and the prosecution were in open court, while Najib and his team were participating online from their respective homes.

“What was read was just a summary. A synopsis of about 316 pages. Four judges (one from the High Court and three from the Court of Appeal), so far, had looked at the case and found the evidence presented against Najib is justified to show the commission of the offences of which he’s charged and the sentence that was passed.

“So I think the facts speak for themselves,” said Sithambaram.

When asked if the appeal was taxing on the prosecution team, Sithambaram said the hearing at the High Court was more exhausting.

“It was a continuing trial. Sometimes, we have very little time. It was stressful. Many of us didn’t sleep many nights. Some resorted to sleeping pills.

“It is exhausting but as lawyers, it is fulfilling to do your job to the best of your ability,” he added.