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Najib Has Been Sentenced To 12 Years' Jail And Fined RM210 Million For Corruption

Datuk Seri Najib Razak has become the country's first former prime minister to be sentenced to jail.

Cover image via The Wall Street Journal

Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has been sentenced to 12 years in jail and fined RM210 million for his crimes of corruption

High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali meted out the sentence after he ruled that Najib is guilty of all seven charges in relation to the SRC International trial earlier today, 28 July.

In his judgment, Nazlan said Najib's defence team had failed to raise reasonable doubt in the prosecution's case.

Here is the breakdown of the sentences according to each charge:

Abuse of power
- One count
- 12 years' jail
- RM210 million fine
- The sentence was carried out under the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act, which carries a jail term of up to 20 years and a fine of not less than five times the value of the gratification

Criminal Breach of Trust (CBT)
- Three counts
- 10 years' jail for each offence
- The sentence was carried out under Section 409 of the Penal Code, which carries a jail term of up to 20 years, a fine, and whipping. However, since Najib is above the age of 50, he is not liable to whipping.

Money laundering
- Three counts
- 10 years' jail for each offence
- The sentence was carried out under Section 4(1)(b) Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act (AMLATFPUAA) 2001, which carries a jail term of up to 15 years and a fine of five times the value of the gratification

The Judge ordered the jail terms to run concurrently, which means Najib will serve 12 years in jail in total, reported Free Malaysia Today.

Prior to the sentence, Najib's lead defence counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah tried to postpone the mitigation to next Monday, 3 August

Najib's lead defence counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah.

Image via Bernama via Berita Harian

Shafee requested Nazlan to postpone the sentencing to next week, contending that his client will not be going anywhere since the country is in a lockdown, reported The Star.

He said that the case is the "biggest case in the world", hence the defence team requires more time to do proper mitigation - a process where the accused pleads for a lighter sentence.

In response, Nazlan asked if Shafee has any precedents to back his request, cases where the courts do not proceed with sentencing after judgment.

Shafee provided some, but the examples were quickly shot down by lead prosecutor V Sithambaram, contending that those were cases where the accused pleaded guilty and not guilty by verdicts.

He invoked Section 183 of the Criminal Procedure Code, which stipulated that the court is duty-bound to pass a sentence upon conviction, reported Malaysiakini.

After hearing from both sides, Nazlan ruled in the prosecutor's favour, saying that the accused still has the right to appeal his ruling in a higher court.

In mitigation, Shafee said Najib deserves a lighter sentence because his client is "over-trusting"

He said being over-trustworthy is an issue deeply rooted in Malaysian politics. Citing examples from the first prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman to the current prime minister, he said leaders can only macro-manage the people under them, but not micro-manage.

"And if the one you trusted betrays you, this is how you can end up," Shafee contended.

"If he was at fault, he was only at fault in trusting people that ought to run the company - 1MDB as well as SRC International."

He also told the court that 99.9% of the money was not used by Najib on himself, but rather spent on political and charitable causes, as well as buying gifts for foreign dignitaries, reported Malaysiakini.

Najib was also provided an opportunity to speak in a bid to plea for leniency.

The 67-year-old stood up in the dock to talk about his achievements as the former premier.

"I did not demand the RM42 million and I did not plan for it. It was offered to me. I have no knowledge of the RM42 million. That's all I have to say," he told the court as he recited the Muslim oath of "Wallahi Wabillahi Watallahi" to indicate the truth of his innocence.

Following that, Najib was seen pacing in the dock, before being comforted by his son Ashman, reported The Star.

Earlier today, 28 July, Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali ruled that Najib is guilty of all seven corruption charges relating to the SRC International trial:

Najib was ordered to enter defence for his SRC International case in November last year:

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