Task Force has no right to order Najib’s arrest – Malaysian Bar

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PETALING JAYA: The task force probing the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal has no legal standing to order the arrest of former premier Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak (pic), said Malaysian Bar president George Varughese.

According to him, the instruction to arrest Najib can only come from either the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) or the police.

“The task force is also not in a position to decide whether or not Najib will be charged and/or when he is to be charged,” Varughese said in a statement issued Tuesday (July 3).

Varughese’s remarks came after a press statement was issued by the 1MDB task force, which confirmed Najib’s arrest at 2.35pm at his home in Jalan Langgak Duta.

Varughese, in expressing shock over the 1MDB task force’s statement, questioned if the task force is legally empowered to order the arrest of Najib.”And, is the task force legally empowered to charge Najib?” Varughese questioned.According to the 1MDB task force, Najib will be taken to the Kuala Lumpur Court Complex to face charges at 8.30am on Wednesday (July 4).

 

However, the task force did not specify what charges Najib would face.Sources have told The Star that Najib will be charged with criminal breach of trust and offences under the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001 (AMLA).

The 1MDB taskforce members are Bukit Aman Special Branch director Datuk Abdul Hamid Bador, former Attorney General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail, and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission chief commissioner Datuk Seri Mohd Shukri Abdull as well as his predecessor Tan Sri Abu Kassim Mohamed.

The taskforce was set up on May 21 to investigate 1MDB and recover its assets from abroad.

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