Former deputy finance minister and Pontian Member of Parliament (MP) Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan was on Wednesday acquitted of charges of money laundering and giving a false statement against him after he agreed to pay a compound of RM1.1 million.
The acquittal was recorded by High Court Justice Datuk Ahmad Shahrir Mohd Salleh.
Justice Ahmad Shahrir in his decision to grant the acquittal said the learned deputy public prosecutor (DPP) applied not to continue prosecuting the accused, and he confirmed that Ahmad would not be made to face the same charges.
Ahmad’s lawyers from Messrs Shahrul Hamidi and Haziq said the acquittal is not an admission of guilt but a settlement through the payment of the compound in a bid to resolve the matter.
“The prosecution also informed the court that it would not proceed with the charges. For everyone’s information, this settlement is not a new process as it took a year before this was accepted and recorded by the court on Wednesday.
“A series of representations were sent to the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) as widely reported. The process to settle is a result of a series of applications, discussions, mediation between the parties and this finally became a reality when it was recorded after agreed to by all parties,” the firm said in a statement.
The High Court in Kuala Lumpur today allowed Rosmah Mansor’s application for the temporary release of her passport to join her daughter who is awaiting the birth of her second child in Singapore, after a similar move by two other judges earlier this month allowing Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to travel to Germany for medical treatment.
According to Astro Awani, judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan allowed the application on condition that Rosmah return the passport on or before Dec 6.
The passport will be released on Oct 15, allowing Rosmah to travel to Singapore from Oct 22 onwards. She must return to the country on or before Nov 21, the report said.
The Shah Alam High Court had on Oct 11 allowed Zahid’s bid for his passport in order to travel to Munich to seek treatment for his back and neck.
His lawyer Ahmad Zaidi Zainal said the application was made before judge Mohd Yazid Mustafa, adding that the temporary release of the passport would not affect Zahid’s next trial date, which is on Oct 22.
Kuala Lumpur High Court judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah also granted Zahid’s request for the temporary return of his passport with the condition of extra surety.
The Umno president had applied for his passport to be released on Oct 26 and is scheduled to return on Nov 21.
Zahid is facing 33 charges of receiving bribes amounting to S$13.56 million (RM42 million) from Ultra Kirana Sdn Bhd as an inducement for himself in his capacity as a civil servant and home minister at the time to extend the contract of the company as the operator of the one-stop centre in China and the VLN system as well as to maintain the agreement to supply VLN integrated system paraphernalia to the same company by the home ministry.
In another seven charges, Zahid is accused as then home minister of accepting S$1,150,000, RM3,000,000, €15,000 (RM75,663) and US$15,000 (RM62,115) in cash from the same company which he knew had a connection with his function as minister.
Rosmah meanwhile faces one charge of soliciting RM187.5 million in bribes and two charges of receiving RM6.5 million from Saidi through Rizal as gratification to assist Jepak Holdings in securing the integrated hybrid solar photovoltaic system project as well as the genset/diesel maintenance and operation for 369 rural schools in Sarawak worth RM1.25 billion through direct negotiations from the education ministry.
Rosmah had said that her daughter, Nooryana Najwa, had a history of complications during delivery and needed assistance and emotional support, the report added.
Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi is now free to fly to Germany to seek medical treatment after two courts agreed to temporarily release his passport.
Earlier Monday (Oct 11), Shah Alam High Court judge Justice Mohd Yazid Mustafa had allowed Ahmad Zahid’s application for the temporary return of his passport.
Ahmad Zahid’s lawyer, Datuk Ahmad Zaidi Zainal, had said that the temporary release of the passport would not affect Ahmad Zahid’s next trial date, which is on Oct 22.
A similar application was made on Oct 7 by lawyer Hamidi Mohd Noh, who is part of Ahmad Zahid’s defence team, before the Kuala Lumpur High Court.
Hamidi sought for his client’s passport to be released on Oct 26 and for it to be returned on Nov 21.
Datuk Seri Najib Razak has also applied to the courts for a temporary release of his passport to enable him to go to Singapore to visit his daughter Nooryana Najwa who is about to give birth.
Najib’s lawyer Nur Syahirah Hanapiah was quoted by Malay Mail as confirming that her client had filed the application yesterday.
“That is correct,” the lawyer said when contacted by Malaysiakini today.
Nur Syahirah said that the Court of Appeal is in the process of sealing the filed documents and that the court is set to hear the application on Monday next week.
On Tuesday, Najib’s wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor applied for her passport to be temporarily released for more than a month in order to travel out of the country.
Earlier today, Rosmah got her passport back temporarily after the high court here allowed her to go to Singapore to visit her pregnant daughter.
The order was granted by judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan after hearing the application from Rosmah’s lawyers while the prosecution did not object, reported Malay Mail.
“The applicant’s passport is to be returned to her on October 15, today itself, and must be returned on or before December 6, with the condition that the applicant can only leave the country to Singapore from October 22, and must return to Malaysia on or before November 21,” he was quoted as saying.
Meanwhile, Nur Syahirah explained that Najib’s defence team filed the passport-related application at the Court of Appeal because his appeal against his conviction and sentencing in the RM42 million SRC International case is still pending there.
However, she did not reveal the specific time period that Najib is seeking for the Court of Appeal to allow him to fly to Singapore and then return to Malaysia, reported Malaysiakini.
Previously, when Najib was first charged over the SRC case in July 2018, the Kuala Lumpur High Court ordered him to surrender his two passports pending disposal of the case.
On May 18, a three-person Court of Appeal bench chaired by judge Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil reserved its decision after 15 days of hearing Najib’s appeal.
When contacted, an officer attached to the Palace of Justice confirmed that the hearing of Najib’s passport-related application is set to proceed before the Court of Appeal on Monday.
Checks on the online cause list at ecourtservices.kehakiman.gov.my listed Najib’s application for hearing before the Court of Appeal at 9am on Monday