Prosecution: Zahid helping daughter to buy Bali hotel was true purpose of charity’s RM17.9m transfer | Malay Mail

Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (centre) is pictured on the Kuala Lumpur ( Prime Courtroom October 11, 2021. ― Image via Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 14 — The prosecution as of late prompt that the true explanation why charitable basis Yayasan Akalbudi’s RM17.9 million used to be transferred to a regulation company — the place it’s allegedly now not even a shopper — used to be for Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to assist his daughter purchase stocks in an organization that had a lodge in Bali, Indonesia.

Lead prosecutor Datuk Raja Rozela Raja Toran mentioned this whilst arguing that the prosecution had confirmed a felony breach of accept as true with fee in opposition to Ahmad Zahid, who’s a trustee of Yayasan Akalbudi and the only approved signatory for the root’s cheques.

The prosecution prompt that the RM17.9 million switch from Yayasan Akalbudi’s mounted deposit accounts to the regulation company Lewis & Co prior to the price range had been sooner or later positioned into mounted deposits used to be now not for funding functions, as a real funding would have as a substitute noticed Yayasan Akalbudi immediately moving and hanging its mounted deposits in every other financial institution if the goal used to be to hunt upper rates of interest.

Sooner than Lewis & Co had positioned the RM17.9 million gained from Yayasan Akalbudi into mounted deposits, nearly part of the price range or round RM8.6 million were initially used for Ahmad Zahid’s daughter Datuk Nurulhidayah’s share purchase deal prior to it used to be returned to the regulation company after the deal fell thru after which simplest positioned into mounted deposits.

Yayasan Akalbudi is a basis that used to be arrange with the said purpose of removing poverty and adorning the welfare of the deficient, with Ahmad Zahid’s legal professionals in the past having attempted to signify to prosecution witnesses that the RM8.6 million used within the deal to shop for the lodge operator’s stocks used to be an “funding” via the charitable basis.

However Raja Rozela highlighted the timing of those two transactions, stating that the RM17.9 million belonging to Yayasan Akalbudi used to be transferred into Lewis & Co’s shopper account on June 28, 2016, whilst Lewis & Co had issued out an RM8.6 million cheque to the lodge operator Ri-Yaz Property Sdn Bhd on June 30, 2016 — which is simply two days later — on Ahmad Zahid’s directions.

“So because of this, My Lord, our competition is that the true objective of the RM17.9 million withdrawal used to be to facilitate his daughter’s bid to shop for a boutique lodge in Bali.

“Now, My Lord, despite the fact that for one beautiful second we had been to just accept that the RM17.9 million used to be a type of funding via Yayasan Akalbudi, the query is, how does operating a boutique lodge in Indonesia assist the deficient folks in Malaysia? If that used to be to be the real objective?” she requested.

“On that notice, My Lord, we humbly put up that the prosecution has confirmed this fee, that the accused had dishonestly misappropriated RM17.9 million, the price range from the seven mounted deposit accounts belonging to Akalbudi,” she mentioned.

How the RM17.9m motion began

Raja Rozela mentioned Ahmad Zahid had in a June 23, 2016 letter gave directions to Affin Financial institution to withdraw all RM17,953,191.04 (RM17.9 million) of Yayasan Akalbudi price range in seven mounted deposit accounts (which have been opened between 2013 and 2016), and for those price range to be transferred to Lewis & Co by way of a bankers’ cheque.

Raja Rozela mentioned the regulation company’s spouse Muralidharan Balan Pillai and its accounts clerk Sothilechmy Veerapan had each showed receiving the RM17.9 million cheque, with the regulation company having recorded this in a June 27, 2016 access in a ledger below a report opened below Ahmad Zahid’s circle of relatives’s Yayasan Al-Falah’s identify.

After the RM17.9 million used to be credited into Lewis & Co’s Maybank shopper account on June 28, 2016, Raja Rozela famous that the regulation company had then on June 30, 2016 issued the RM8,602,920 (RM8.6 million) cheque on Ahmad Zahid’s directions for the deliberate acquire of 60 consistent with cent of stocks in lodge operator Ri-Yaz Asset.

Raja Rozela then highlighted what the regulation company’s spouse Muralidharan had testified in court docket in the past, together with how he mentioned he used to be instructed that the RM8.6 million cheque used to be for funding functions and the kind of questions that Ahmad Zahid’s legal professionals had requested this witness.

Raja Rozela mentioned Ahmad Zahid’s legal professionals had requested questions to signify that Ahmad Zahid’s daughter used to be being positioned in Ri-Yaz to watch the “so-called funding” of Yayasan Akalbudi throughout the deal to shop for 60 consistent with cent of the lodge company’s stocks, however identified that the gross sales and buy settlement didn’t state that Nurulhidayah is a “proxy” for Yayasan Akalbudi to go into into the proportion acquire deal.

“Now from all this, I believe it’s made transparent, the true goal in the back of the switch, our submission is that the accused had supposed to switch the RM17.9 million to make use of it or to make use of a part of it for his private receive advantages.

“The switch used to be made below the pretext of an funding via Akalbudi, however from the road of wondering, we now know the true objective used to be in truth to assist his daughter to shop for a lodge in Bali,” she mentioned.

A purple flag?

Raja Rozela mentioned mounted deposits could be an instance of investments that Yayasan Akalbudi is allowed to hold out below its corporate charter as pastime may also be earned at a set price, however mentioned it didn’t make sense for the root’s mounted deposits to be transferred out to regulation company Lewis & Co to be then positioned into mounted deposits at every other financial institution, as the cash may have been transferred immediately between banks below Yayasan Akalbudi’s identify.

“Now taking into account the concept that of funding, if you wish to make investments your cash and earn as a lot pastime, we can pick out the financial institution that provides the best rates of interest for mounted deposits.

“So if it used to be natural funding functions, I believe it’ll make sense if the cash is uplifted after which positioned from Affin Financial institution into every other financial institution, say Maybank or no matter financial institution that we’ve got for the aim of producing pastime, for the aim of incomes extra or upper rates of interest,” she mentioned. 

“However whether it is an funding objective and we wish to generate pastime, why transfer it to Lewis & Co? Why now not open or make placement below Yayasan Akalbudi?” she requested.

Ahmad Zahid’s legal professionals had argued that Yayasan Akalbudi stays the recommended proprietor of the RM17.9 million even if it have been transferred to Lewis & Co, pronouncing that this used to be as a result of a accept as true with have been created on behalf of Yayasan Akalbudi with the regulation company performing as a trustee for the root.

However Raja Rozela argued that Ahmad Zahid himself may now not entrust the RM17.9 million on behalf of Yayasan Akalbudi to the regulation company, and mentioned the root will have to be the one who immediately entrusted the cash to the regulation company.

“That cash, that accept as true with, the valuables does now not belong to the accused, it belongs to Yayasan Akalbudi. 

“So if there ever used to be taken to be an entrustment or to create entrustment between Akalbudi and Lewis & Co, it needs to be via Akalbudi to Lewis & Co. 

“The accused does now not have the precise or isn’t entitled to go the cash to Lewis & Co, with none roughly association and any roughly objective obviously said,” she mentioned.

Whilst acknowledging that cash in Lewis & Co’s shopper account method the price range’ recommended proprietor continues to be the regulation company’s shopper, Raja Rozela mentioned that Muralidharan had himself instructed the court docket that Yayasan Akalbudi used to be by no means his shopper.

“We will have to ask ourselves the following query, used to be Akalbudi a shopper? And the solution isn’t any, the buyer’s account in Lewis & Co used to be opened below (Yayasan) Al-falah. The cash comes from Akalbudi, so the aim itself is already a query, is a purple flag there,” she mentioned.

“If the motion is to be taken as an funding of opening one mounted deposit account into every other to earn pastime, possibly this is excusable. However right here we already know that Akalbudi has completely not anything to do with Lewis & Co, or conversely Lewis & Co isn’t performing for Akalbudi, no contract, no different prison paintings that Akalbudi has prompt Lewis & Co to do to allow the cash to be deposited into the (shopper’s) account, the account is for Al-falah,” she mentioned.

Raja Rozela additionally famous that Ahmad Zahid’s legal professionals had in the past prompt in court docket to his former govt secretary Primary Mazlina Mazlan @ Ramly that it used to be her negligence and carelessness that had brought about Ahmad Zahid to shift the control of Yayasan Akalbudi’s price range to regulation company Lewis & Co. (Mazlina had in the past mentioned that Ahmad Zahid had approved the usage of Yayasan Akalbudi cheques for different issues reminiscent of his bank card invoice bills, even though his legal professionals have disputed this and sought to spotlight her alleged negligence and blunder of now not the usage of Ahmad Zahid’s private cheques.)

With Mazlina having disagreed with Ahmad Zahid’s legal professionals’ advice on the cause of the RM17.9 million switch, Raja Rozela wondered the defence’s argument via highlighting that it will had been more straightforward to switch out the secretary as a substitute of to ship it to a regulation company as a way to alternate the control of the price range.

“It’s our competition that it defies credibility for the accused to signify that moving RM17.9 million used to be more straightforward than moving out the secretary,” she mentioned.

Having wondered the aim of the RM17.9 million switch, Raja Rozela in the end concluded it used to be to facilitate the acquisition of stocks within the lodge company.

She had additionally highlighted that Ri-Yaz Group managing director Datuk Mohammad Shaheen Shah Mohd Sidek’s testimony because the 84th prosecution witness had proven lively involvement via each Ahmad Zahid’s and his daughter over the proportion acquire deal, together with a number of conferences that that they had over the subject.

On this trial, Ahmad Zahid ― who may be a former house minister and lately the Umno president ― is dealing with 47 fees, particularly 12 counts of felony breach of accept as true with in the case of charitable basis Yayasan Akalbudi’s price range, 27 counts of cash laundering, and 8 counts of bribery fees.

One of the vital 12 felony breach of accept as true with fees comes to Ahmad Zahid allegedly having transferred Yayasan Akalbudi’s RM17.9 million to Lewis & Co.

The trial prior to Prime Courtroom pass judgement on Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah resumes on Monday.

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