Najib To Serve 12-Year Jail Sentence After Failing Final Appeal On 23 Aug
UPDATE (6.45pm): AFP learnt that Najib had been sent to prison shortly after the court upheld his sentence. His daughter-in-law said he was transported to Kajang Prison, located in the southern area of Kuala Lumpur.
Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak will face jail time for his role in misappropriating funds from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) sovereign fund.
This came after failing in his final appeal against seven charges, including abuse of power, money laundering, and criminal breach of trust. He faces a 12-year jail sentence and a S$64.8 million (RM210 million) fine.
Earlier in the day, Mr Najib had also attempted to recuse the Chief Justice overseeing his final appeal, claiming her husband had “negative sentiments” toward the former PM’s leadership.
The judge, however, said there was no connection between a Facebook post her husband put up in 2018 and Najib’s appeal.
Najib to serve jail sentence for 7 charges in connection to 1MDB scandal
On Tuesday (23 Aug) evening, the guilty verdict against Mr Najib in connection to the 1MDB scandal was upheld.
Delivering the judgement on behalf of a five-judge panel, Chief Justice Tun Tengku Maimum Tuan Mat said the evidence presented during the trial points overwhelmingly to guilt for all seven charges.
As such, Mr Najib’s appeals have been “unanimously dismissed”, and the conviction and sentence are affirmed.
The Malaysian Federal Court also denied Najib’s request for a stay of sentence, reports Reuters.
However, according to South China Morning Post (SCMP), it’s unclear if he will be transported to prison immediately.
Last-minute appeal to recuse Chief Justice dismissed
Earlier in the day, Mr Najib’s last-ditched attempt to recuse Chief Justice Tengku was also denied.
The former PM’s lead counsel cited a Facebook post shared by the Chief Justice’s husband in 2018, which criticised Najib’s leadership.
According to Channel NewsAsia, Mr Najib’s counsel argued that this was grounds for the Chief Justice to recuse herself from the proceedings.
However, the Chief Justice said there was no nexus between the Facebook post in question and Mr Najib’s appeal, adding that,
To recuse a judge is a real danger of bias.
Sentenced to 12 years’ jail & fined S$64 million
Mr Najib was found guilty of seven charges by the Malaysian High Court back in July 2020 and was sentenced to 12 years’ jail and fined S$64.8 million (RM210 million).
The charges include criminal breach of trust, money laundering, and abuse of power.
The conviction was subsequently upheld by the Court of Appeal in Dec 2021.
In April this year, Najib filed a petition of appeal to the Federal Court.
Although the former PM had attempted to cite new evidence and asked for the final appeal hearing to be adjourned, the court denied these requests.
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