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Thursday, January 7, 2010

Rosli Dahlan’s Trial: Day 2Rosli Dahlan’s Trial: Day 2

by Debra Chang

Lawyer Rosli Dahlan was only a witness and not a suspect in a 2007 Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) investigation involving a former senior policeman, the Sessions Court was told today.

Deputy public prosecutor Anthony Kevin Morais is the prosecution’s second witness to take the oath in the ongoing trial of the 48-year-old lawyer who has been linked to former Commercial Crimes Investigation Department (CCID) director Datuk Ramli Yusuf’s corruption case.

Rosli’s lawyer Datuk K. Kumaraendran had yesterday challenged the prosecution to show “reasonable grounds” for the charge against Rosli, who was Ramli’s lawyer. Under questioning from the prosecution’s Zulqarnain Hassan, Morais told the court that he had received information which led him to believe that Ramli was on the take.

Morais said a person named “Moi Sai Chin” had allegedly bribed several people, including Ramli, to protect his illegal businesses from being raided by the police.

“I also referred to a bank statement supplied that showed Moi Sai Chin had presented RM20,000 in cash every month from 1999 to 2002 to strengthen his statement that the bribe money was actually received,” Morais said.He added that “Moi Sai Chin” was also the complainant in Ramli’s corruption case.

Morais explained that Rosli, who had a close relationship with the cop, would be able to provide evidence to successfully prosecute Ramli.

Zulqarnain: “What considerations did you find that Encik Rosli could help in the investigations?”

Morais: “I had based it on the investigations conducted on Ramli Yusuff’s property and, at the time in context of the investigation papers, had seen Rosli Dahlan’s role in those properties.

Not only that but the relationship with Datuk Ramli Yusuff since university and also as a lawyer in Datuk Ramli’s private case in the Syariah Court. And also Rosli Dahlan’s role in a company called Bonus Circle Sdn Bhd where Datuk Ramli held an interest.

“I also found from investigations that the company secretary from Bonus Circle at that time was interviewed and found through her speech that there were instructions from Bonus Circle which had at times been issued by Rosli Dahlan.

“Your Honour, I also found from investigations presented to me a sales and-purchase agreement for a house belonging to Rosli Dahlan sold to Datuk Ramli Yusuff.

“I also found Rosli Dahlan had acted as a lawyer for Bonus Circle to purchase a property in Megan Philio Avenue for Bonus Circle where Datuk Ramli had an interest.

“There was also testimony about a property in Danga Bay, Johor Baru where Bonus Circle had bought and where, once again, Datuk Ramli had an interest.”

Zulqarnain: “In your notice, you found Rosli to be a ‘sekutu’ (ally)? What does it mean?”

Morais: “When considering the role of Rosli Dahlan, I found Rosli Dahlan to be a ‘sekutu’ in the definition of the Anti-Corruption Act 1997 under section 2.”

Zulqarnain: “Further on page 2 [refers to the ACA's notice to declare assets], is what is stated here verification of Encik Rosli’s properties?”

Morais: “No. What’s stated here are properties owned by Encik Rosli.”

Zulqarnain: “What is meant here is; are the properties listed those which Encik Rosli has an interest?”

Morais: “Yes.”

Zulqarnain: “So the properties are owned by Rosli?”

Morais: “Yes.”

Rosli’s lawyer then asked Sessions Court judge Abu Bakar Katar for a break before cross-examination to allow him time to get notes from another court where Morais had given his evidence on the same points, referring to Ramli’s trial yesterday.

Rosli was charged two years ago for “deliberately” not complying with terms of a notice issued by graft busters who wanted him to spill the beans on what assets he owned. If convicted, he may be jailed for up to 20 years and fined a maximum of RM100,000.

Rosli, who sat in the dock dressed in a pink shirt under a grey suit, appeared upset with The Malaysian Insider’s report of his trial yesterday and threatened to sue.

“I’m in the mood to sue,” he said. Rosli has earlier this year filed a RM50 million defamation suit against several newspapers, including the country’s oldest, New Straits Times, as well as The Star and Utusan Malaysia.“All I want is justice,” he said and told The Malaysian Insider to put the charge accurately.

The charge against Rosli was translated from Malay to English and reads as follows: “That you, on 21 September 2007, at the Deputy Public Prosecutor’s Office, Anti-Corruption Agency Headquarters in the Federal Territory of Putrajaya as a person required by the Prosecutor through a Notice under section 32(1)(b) of the Anti-Corruption Act 1997 dated 17 July 2007, where the said Notice was extended to 16 August 2007, for you give a truthful statement and disclose all information that you know in writing and under oath on every asset whether movable or non-movable, that you own or have an interest in and all sources of your income, revenue or asset, had deliberately not complied with the terms of the said Notice, that is, you had in a sworn statement dated 20 September 2007 did not disclose all information related to your property as required in the Notice. Therefore, you have committed an offence under section 32(2) of the Anti-Corruption Act 1997 and can be sentenced under the same section and Act”.

The trial will continue after lunch.


I was in court yesterday and today to lend moral support for Encik Rosli Dahlan. Like Encik Rosli, I want to see justice done. At today’s trial, there were a few other of Malaysians who share our belief.

DPP Mr. Anthony Kevin Morais was questioned by the Lawyer for the Defence, Datuk K. Kumaraendran when the trial resumed this afternoon (December 22, 2009). In the style of the witness (a MACC Director) yesterday, Mr. Kevin was evasive. I was amazed that he left key documents in his office, knowing fully well that he was going to be on the witness stand today. But he said he would produce these documents if he was ordered to do so by the Court. Fortunately, Rosli Dahlan’s lawyers had relevant copies of these documents.

What was surprising to me as a lay person was that Mr. Kevin relied only on statements given by a certain “Moi Sai Chin” who himself was under MACC investigation for illegal activities to prepare the charge against Encik Rosli. When he was asked why he did not seek statements from a number of police officers who were mentioned in name by “Moi”. Mr. Kevin said in a rather arrogant manner that it was “atas budi bicara saya” (at my discretion). The trial continues tomorrow.—Din Merican


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