KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 28): Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak's lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah confirmed on Wednesday (Sept 28) that he will lead Najib's conviction review application at the Federal Court after the apex court on Aug 23 rejected the final appeal against the ex-premier's conviction involving 1Malaysia Development Bhd's (1MDB) former subsidiary SRC International Sdn Bhd.
"Yes, I am back on board [for the review]. I have also written [to] the Federal Court to ask an early hearing date for a review," Shafee told High Court judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan.
"Besides this, my client Najib has also filed [a petition for] a [royal] pardon," Shafee said.
According to Shafee, Najib filed a petition for a royal pardon as Najib believes he was not given a full and fair hearing at the Federal Court.
Najib is serving a 12-year jail sentence at Kajang Prison after the Federal Court on Aug 23 rejected Najib's final appeal against his conviction involving SRC.
The Federal Court then upheld the High Court and Court of Appeal's decisions that found Najib guilty of seven charges involving SRC.
On July 28, 2020, the High Court sentenced Najib to 12 years in jail and fined him RM210 million after he was found guilty by judge Datuk Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali of the seven charges involving SRC.
The seven charges comprised one count of abuse of power involving Retirement Fund Inc's (KWAP) RM4 billion loans to SRC, three counts of criminal breach of trust involving RM42 million and three counts of money laundering.
On Dec 8, 2021, the Court of Appeal upheld the High Court's decision.
Following the Federal Court's Aug 23 decision to reject Najib's final appeal against his conviction involving SRC, Najib on Sept 1 filed the petition for a royal pardon.
On Sept 6, Najib, who is also Member of Parliament (MP) for Pekan, filed his conviction review application at the Federal Court.
Najib, however, remains as an MP and his status as MP will only be finalised after the petition for a royal pardon is concluded, according to Parliament speaker Tan Sri Azhar Azizan Harun's statement on Sept 5.
At the High Court on Wednesday, deputy public prosecutor Mohd Ashrof Adrin Kamarul told Zaini that the Federal Court has fixed Oct 21 as the first case management date for Najib's conviction review application.
Shafee said Najib had filed a certificate of urgency to have the conviction review application heard quickly as it was a habeas corpus case.
In legal terminology, habeas corpus is a legal recourse through which a person can report an unlawful detention or imprisonment to a court.
The legal recourse also involves a court order to bring the person to court to determine whether the person's detention is lawful.
Zaini, who is hearing Najib's second SRC case regarding three money laundering charges involving RM27 million, also fixed Nov 29 as the case management date for the second SRC case.
The RM27 million money laundering charges against Najib were filed in February 2019 — before the RM42 million SRC trial started on April 3, 2019.
At first, the prosecution in Najib's SRC case wanted the three money laundering charges involving RM27 million to be tried together with the seven charges involving RM42 million, but the plan was changed due to a procedural issue.
Najib is alleged to have received the RM27 million at AmIslamic Bank Bhd's Jalan Raja Chulan branch on July 8, 2014.