Daim, wife discharge lawyers handling their corruption cases, says source

It is understood the legal team’s services were terminated due to a difference of opinion relating to the conduct of the couple’s cases.

(FMT) – Former finance minister Daim Zainuddin and his wife, Naimah Khalid, have discharged the team of lawyers assembled to defend them in an investigation by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) into their financial affairs and the ensuing prosecution, sources said.

“The legal team’s retainer was terminated on Wednesday due to a difference of opinion in the conduct of the couple’s cases,” a source told FMT.

Daim and Naimah are themselves qualified lawyers and once served in the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC). Daim still holds a practising certificate.

They had retained the law firm of Wong Kian Kheong as solicitors and a team of lawyers led by former solicitor-general Yusof Zainal Abiden, who is now a practising lawyer.

The others retained as counsel were M Puravalen, Yunos Shariff and Alex Tan.

According to the source, the team was assembled a month ago.

“Following their departure, Daim and Naimah are expected to appoint a new law firm and lawyers to act on their behalf,” the source said.

When contacted, both Tan and Yusof declined comment.

On Tuesday, Naimah claimed trial in the sessions court on a charge of failing to comply with a MACC notice requiring the declaration of assets.

She is accused of failing to declare her ownership of companies, several plots of land here and in Penang, as well as two vehicles.

If found guilty, she could be liable for a jail term of up to five years and a fine of not more than RM100,000.

Earlier this month, MACC said it had summoned Naimah and her sons, Amir and Amin, to provide information on assets belonging to the family.

MACC chief Azam Baki said yesterday Daim would “most likely” be charged next week following his discharge from hospital.

On Wednesday, Azam said MACC had received approval from the AGC to bring Daim to court. However, he did not specify the nature of the charges the former finance minister is set to face.

MACC said its investigation into Daim began in February 2023 and was based on information from the Pandora Papers leak, which linked several prominent Malaysians to offshore tax havens.

Daim and his family have filed an application in court for a judicial review to challenge the investigation, describing it as unconstitutional.