Hornbill Unleashed

August 2, 2017

I have not been charged in any court of law, says Razak Baginda

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:01 AM

I have not been charged in any court of law, says Razak BagindaABDUL Razak Baginda stood his ground last night and insisted he has not committed any crime of corruption or breached any laws in relation to the Scorpene submarine deals.

In a statement issued late last night, Razak said he has not been charged in any court of law in France.

“French news reports have stated that individuals in the purchase of the submarines have been charged. These reports are misleading,” he said.

It was reported that Razak was charged in France over alleged kickbacks in the 2002 sale of submarines to Malaysia.

He had advised Prime Minister Najib Razak when he was defence minister between 2000 and 2008 over the deals.

Najib oversaw the deal, worth nearly €1 billion (RM5 billion), to buy two Scorpene-class submarines and one Agosta-class submarine from French naval dockyards unit DCN, which is linked to French defence group Thales.

An investigation into the deal was launched in 2010 in response to a complaint from Malaysian rights group Suaram.

Razak said that the term “charged” in the context of the inquiry means placing the said individuals under “formal investigation”.

“The French legal process is different from the Malaysian legal process. In the Malaysian legal process a person suspected of a crime is investigated and if there is sufficient evidence, the person is charged in a court of law.”

“It must be emphasised that it’s an ongoing inquiry and no formal charges in a court of law have been brought against any individual(s),” he said.

Razak said that he welcomed any inquiries by the French authorities as he had not committed any crime or breached any law.

“In any criminal proceeding a person is innocent until proven guilty and has to be based on evidence and not hearsay or narratives.

“It is highly regrettable that the news reports are misleading and the correct facts of the matter are not reported,” he said.

French investigators are also looking into allegations that €114 million was paid to a purported Malaysia-based shell company, Perimekar, as part of the deal. That company was controlled, at the time, by Razak’s wife.

However, that payment is likely to ultimately fall outside the jurisdiction of the investigation because it was not made to a French company.

The affair emerged spectacularly in 2006, when Razak’s Mongolian mistress, who was said to have demanded a pay-off for working as a language translator in the deal, was shot dead and her body blown up with plastic explosives near Kuala Lumpur.

A Malaysian court later cleared Razak of abetting the murder, sparking an outcry and opposition allegations of a cover-up.

Source : The Malaysian Insight



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