'RM64 million went into Najib's account', says bank employee during corruption trial

Malaysian former Prime Minister Najib Razak arrives at Kuala Lumpur High Court where he faces charges of money laundering linked to the 1Malaysia Development Berhad scandal, on April 23, 2019. PHOTO: DPA

KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The eighth day of Najib Razak's corruption trial on Wednesday (April 24) heard that a total of RM64 million (S$21 million) went into an AmBank account belonging to the former prime minister in 2014 and 2015.

A witness from AmBank shared in the High Court how numerous amounts were banked into the account during that period.

AmBank branch manager R. Uma Devi, who read her witness statement from the stand, said RM37 million out of the RM64 million was credited into Najib's account from the bank account of Ihsan Perdana Sdn Bhd.

Ihsan Perdana is the corporate social responsibility unit of SRC International, a former unit of state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad which is at the centre of a massive financial scandal.

Ms Uma Devi, who is attached to the bank branch in Jalan Raja Chulan here, said that based on the transaction records, RM27 million was credited into Najib's account on July 8, 2014. It was not mentioned in court where the RM27 million came from.

The witness said another RM27 million was credited into the same account on Dec 26, 2014, which came from Ihsan Perdana.

She said Ihsan Perdana also credited RM10 million into Najib's account on Feb 10, 2015, and read from her statement other sums of money that were transferred between accounts.

Ms Uma Devi said former SRC International CEO Nik Faizal Ariff Kamil was appointed as an authorised personnel for Najib's accounts.

"This allows him to manage Najib's account at AmBank without referring to any accounts in specific, take cheque books and account statements," she said.

The witness spent hours since morning reading from a statement.

At one point in the afternoon, Najib's lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah asked for a break, saying: "I don't know about the witness, but I'm really tired and bored."

The proceeding adjourned for the day at 5.30pm, and Ms Uma Devi smiled when prosecutor Datuk Suhaimi Ibrahim commented that she must have been tired reading the whole day.

Earlier in the morning, witness Rosaiah Mohamed Rosli of Affin Bank told the court that RM50 million was credited into the bank account of Ihsan Perdana.

The bank processing officer testified that Affin Bank received data through single credit confirmation advice on Dec 24, 2015, to credit the account of its client, Ihsan Perdana, with RM40 million from the AmIslamic Bank account belonging to Gandingan Mentari Sdn Bhd.

Gandingan Mentari is a subsidiary of SRC International.

"The amount was credited on the same day," she said.

She also confirmed that the bank received similar data on Feb 5 and 6 in 2015 to credit Ihsan Perdana's account with RM5 million each day from Gandingan Mentari's AmIslamic Bank account.

Among other witnesses called to the stand on Wednesday was lawyer Ashraf Abdul Razak who used to work for law firm Zulqarnain & Co.

He received a cheque for RM2.5 million on Feb 2, 2015, from corporate figure Habibul Rahman Kadir Shah, which the latter said was for a defence contract.

Najib is facing seven charges involving RM42 million belonging to SRC International.

The trial continues before Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali on Thursday.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.