KUALA LUMPUR: Kinabatangan MP Bung Moktar Radin and his wife, Zizie Izette Samad, have been ordered to enter their defence on charges of corruption and abetment over a RM150 million Felcra investment.
Sessions court judge Rozina Ayob said the prosecution has established a prima facie case against the former Felcra chairman and his wife.
Bung, 64, who is also a Sabah deputy chief minister, was charged with two counts of receiving bribes amounting to RM2.2 million and RM262,500 as gratification to obtain Felcra’s approval to make a RM150 million investment in Public Mutual unit trust.
He is accused of receiving bribes from Public Mutual investment agent Madhi Abdul Hamid, through Zizie at the Public Bank branch in Taman Melawati here between 12.30pm and 5pm on June 12, 2015.
He is also charged with receiving a RM337,500 bribe from another Public Mutual investment agent, Norhaili Mokhtar, under Zizie’s name for the same reason and at the same place on June 19, 2015.
Zizie, 44, faces three charges of abetting her husband in the matter at the same place, date and time.
In her oral judgment, Rozina said she was aware and cautious that Madhi and Norhaili had given statements to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) which contradicted their testimonies in court.
“After due consideration, I accepted other parts of the evidence given by them,” she said.
The judge said she also took into account the evidence of other prosecution witnesses in ordering Bung and Zizie to enter their defence.
“As such, the prosecution has proven all ingredients of the charges to establish a prima facie case,” she said.
Rozina said a presumption under Section 50 of the MACC Act had been invoked against Bung that he had received the money as gratification.
Deputy public prosecutor Law Chin How had said earlier that Bung had received the government’s approval to invest RM150 million in the unit trust, but it was Zizie who obtained the money.
Madhi and Norhaili were regarded by the prosecution as hostile witnesses as their evidence in court and statements to MACC were inconsistent.
The defence took the position that the two had lied in court and could not be believed.
Law said Madhi and Norhaili had been cross-examined about their contradictions.
Although the defence wanted their entire testimony to be expunged, he said, there was some key evidence that could be relied upon to ask the two accused to enter their defence.
Bung and Zizie have opted to give evidence under oath.
Bung’s lawyer, M Athimulan, said his client and seven others will give evidence.
Counsel M Kumaraendran, appearing for Zizie, said his client and another will testify.
The parties are meeting Rozina in her chambers to fix hearing dates.-FMT