Hornbill Unleashed

August 14, 2013

Bourdon: Jasbir’s statements do not count

Alyaa Azhar

Only statements made under oath before the judges count, says Suaram lawyer William Bourdon.

Any statements made by Scorpene deal middleman Jasbir Singh Chahl do not count. This is the opinion of Suara Rakyat Malaysia’s (Suaram) France-based lawyer William Bourdon.

“Currently, hearing Jasbir as a witness [in the Scorpene submarine deal] is still ongoing. As a consequence, only statements made under oath before the judges count,” he said in a press statement.

According to Suaram director Cynthia Gabriel, Jasbir has given a 270-page long testimony in the French court. (more…)


August 7, 2013

Don’t probe us, probe Scorpene deal, says Suaram


Suaram has slammed the authorities for what it calls intimidation and harassment of the NGO when they should be probing the Scorpene submarines scandal instead.

“We challenge the police to spend time and energy to curb serious crime in this country rather than trying to intimidate and harass Suaram.

“We also urge the police, Malaysia Anti- Corruption Commission (MACC) and the Companies Commission Malaysia (CCM) to investigate companies connected to the Scorpene submarine scandal such as Perimekar and Terasasi, as recently highlighted in the French media.

“Stop harassing the whistle-blowers, investigate the corrupt suspects,” said Suaram executive director Nalini Elumalai in a statement today. (more…)

July 30, 2013

Scorpene scandal, is Jasbir Singh Chahl credible?

altantuya 9Kua Kia Soong

The New Straits Times has never been the beacon of investigative journalism in Malaysia. Resurrecting Jasbir Singh Chahl to try to whitewash the Scorpene scandal is hardly a scoop – Jasbir’s churlish account fails to answer the many questions raised by the scandal and the murder of Altantuya.

SUARAM has all along stuck to the facts and this can be checked in our publication: “Questioning Arms Spending in Malaysia: From Altantuya to Zikorsky” by Kua Kia Soong, 2010. By no means does Jasbir disprove the chronology of events noted in the book nor shed any light on the revelations by the French enquiry thus far. But first, let us examine the credentials of this man touted as the “architect” of the Scorpene submarine deal, the most expensive arms purchase by our country to date, costing well over RM7 billion. (more…)

November 16, 2012

AFRAID OF SCORPENE LAWYER: Hisham refuses to clear Bourdon’s trip to brief Parliament

Maria Begum

There’s only a week to go but Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein has refused to give the green light for French lawyer William Bourdon to enter Malaysia where he is due to brief Members of Parliament on the latest in the Scorpenes corruption trial, in which Prime Minister Najib Razak has been heavily implicated.

“We fear the worst given the way the Najib administration has been attacking SUARAM and even banned non-MPs from accessing the Parliament press conference lobby. If there is no guilt, why not allow Bourdon to come in and brief us all. If Najib is innocent, there is no need to deport Bourdon or to shut up SUARAM. Instead, as PM, he should welcome the chance to clear his name for himself as well as for his country,” PKR MP for Batu Tian Chua told Malaysia Chronicle. (more…)

October 21, 2012

Explosive Altantuya Revelations Coming?

John Berthelsen,Asia Sentinel

Retired Malaysian police chief schedules mysterious Bangkok press conference Monday to announce “new revelations” in murder for hire case

The Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand announced Saturday that Musa Hassan, who retired recently as Malaysia’s national police chief, would hold a Monday press conference in Bangkok with “new revelations” over the 2006 murder for hire of Mongolian beauty Altantuya Shaariibuu.

“After her death it was revealed that she had been linked to the sale of two French-made submarines to Malaysia for US$1.3 billion – a deal under heavy suspicion of high-level corruption,” the FCCT announcement said. “The current Malaysian PM, Najib Razak, was then Minister of Defense and the national police chief was Musa Hassan. The revelations shook the Malaysian political landscape.” (more…)

October 18, 2012

Suaram: We’re still party to Scorpene inquiry in France

Koh Jun Lin

Human rights NGO Suaram is a party to the Scorpene judicial inquiry in France and allegations to the contrary are “a malicious accusation (and) a total lie,” its secretariat member Fadiah Nadwa Fikri said today.

Speaking at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today, Fadiah (right in photo) showed French court documents dated April 11, naming Suaram director and founder Kua Kia Soong as the plaintiff.

“If you have followed the progress of the case, we had testified before the judge on April 19. (more…)

October 10, 2012

Scorpene inquiry on-going, says French lawyer Bourdon

Susan Loone

The lawyer petitioning the court in Paris to probe corruption in the sale of two Scorpene-class submarines to Malaysia has ticked off a French prosecutor for his remarks on the case reported yesterday by national news agency Bernama.

Prominent human rights lawyer William Bourdon, who is based in Paris, said there was no question of “an on-going trial” as the two French judges appointed to the case were still carrying out their investigations into the controversial defence deal between France and Malaysia.

“The Tribunal deGrande Instance has convened a criminal inquiry of which (Malaysian human rights group) Suaram has been accepted as a civil party since March 2012,” said Bourdon. (more…)

Scorpene inquiry proves ‘valid basis’ for graft claim

Hazlan Zakaria

The French judiciary is holding a criminal inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the Scorpene submarine sale by a French company to Malaysia because it deems this ‘serious enough’ for an investigation.

PKR vice-president Tian Chua (left)confirmed at a press conference at the Parliament lobby today that the matter has yet to reach the trial stage.

“… (But) if the judge believes there were no grounds, he would have stopped the inquiry … Bernama used technical words to say there is no trial,” said Chua. (more…)

October 7, 2012

Suaram lawyers may relocate briefing to S’pore

Christine Chan

Suaram’s French lawyers are likely to brief MPs on the facts of the Scorpene inquiry in Singapore rather than in Malaysia as originally planned, said opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim.

This, he said, is due to fears that the lawyers may not be permitted entry into Malaysia, as one of them – William Bourdon – had been deported from the country before.

Hence, there is a likelihood that the session will be held in Singapore possibly in November, Anwar told Malaysiakini after delivering the keynote speech ‘Does the Arab spring have the potential of becoming a Muslim spring?’ in Paris yesterday. (more…)

September 24, 2012

Putrajaya’s SUARAM probe sparks civil society activism

Ida Lim

Outrage at Putrajaya’s clampdown on Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM) appears to have given a major boost to civil society activism here, likely affecting the Najib government’s bid for votes from middle Malaysia ahead of an election expected soon.

The human rights watchdog has been instrumental in the French probe on Malaysia’s multibillion ringgit purchase of two Scorpene submarines, a high-profile scandal that many believe will unearth incriminating evidence against top government officials here.

Global rights group Amnesty International had yesterday raised suspicion over the timing of the government’s sudden interest in SUARAM’s operations and funding sources, saying the probe was opened only four weeks after the organisation revealed documents showing a close associate to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had allegedly sold Malaysian naval secrets to the French. (more…)

September 23, 2012

Ops Suaram: What next, BN?

Jeswan Kaur

The government is making sure it does all within its power to ‘bury’ Suaram, in any way possible.

It is no secret that Sarawak Chief Minister Taib Mahmud practically owns the state and together with his family and cronies has raked in millions allegedly using fraudulent means to clean up the state’s rainforest of its priceless timber.

Still, Taib who has been safeguarding his chief minister’s seat for 31 years now has never been prosecuted under any law, despite there being proof of his corrupt and meandering ways.

From the look of things, it seems that nothing is going to stop the 76-year-old Taib from further plundering Sarawak’s rainforest and usurping the native customary rights land of the indigenous people of Sarawak . (more…)

September 22, 2012

Suaram hounded, harassed for trying to expose corruption

P Ramakrishnan ,Aliran

The only crime committed by Suaram – it seems – it had dared to expose the massive corruption involving the Ministry of Defence when the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, was the defence minister.

The purchase of the Scorpene submarines is a scandal that can be termed as the mother of all scandals.

It cost taxpayers hundreds of million ringgit; it cost a Mongolian beauty her very life; it had caused the disappearance of records from the immigration system involving Altantuya’s entry into Malaysia; it led to a mystery over the release of the C4 explosives without authorisation to blow up a human body into smithereens; it perpetuated the puzzle regarding the conviction of two police personnel who had no motive to commit murder; it freed Razak Baginda, the lover of the murdered Mongolian beauty, without the prosecution appealing this bewildering court decision. (more…)

September 14, 2012

Attacks on Suaram an admission of guilt?

Nathaniel Tan

Suaram stands for Suara Rakyat Malaysia (The Voice of the Malaysian People). No one organisation can represent the voice of an entire nation, but no one organisation has likely done more for the voiceless of Malaysia than Suaram.

Who is Suaram?

Born in the aftermath of Ops Lalang, Suaram has been at the forefront of defending human rights in Malaysia since 1989 (when this author was only nine years old).

Suaram was formed by ex-ISA detainees and their family support groups to campaign for the abolition of the ISA. Over the years, its issues of concern grew to encompass a much wider scope. (more…)

July 14, 2012

Altantuya’s dad question’s Najib’s innocence for refusing to help in Scorpenes trial

Altantuya's dad question's Najib's innocence for refusing to help in Scorpenes trial

Wong Choon Mei

When even the father of Altantuya Shaariibuu, the young Mongolian woman who was murdered in Malaysia, questions why Prime Minister Najib Razak is so reluctant to take part in the French Scorpenes corruption trial, then it is indeed time for Najib as the leader of his nation to step forward and clear his name and his government’s for the world to see.

Setev’s words are not only loud and clear for all to hear but have deep implications for Malaysia, which has been dragged into the centre of the 6-year-long global scandal. If Najib doesn’t dare to defend his own name, then he must be hiding something or is even guilty of the damning allegations made against him. This is what Setev is saying. (more…)

July 5, 2012

Probe Scorpene scandal firms instead, says Suaram

Koh Jun Lin

The government should investigate companies involved in the Scorpene scandal instead of harassing Suaram, said its director Kua Kia Soong.

“It should be companies like Terasasi that should be investigated, but it turned out to be Suaram – the whistleblower – that is investigated,” Kua lamented at a press conference today.

He said the French had done Malaysia “a big favour” by investigating the French defence company DCNS and the government should act on its findings.

Suaram was nearly raided by the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) as part of a “routine inspection” yesterday, but the raid was aborted when the notice of inspection was found to be flawed. (more…)

June 12, 2012

Scorpene motion torpedoed

Patrick Lee

Nurul’s plan to discuss the sale of secret submarine papers to a French company were rejected in Parliament today.

An emergency motion aimed at discussing the alleged sale of highly secret Scorpene submarine-related documents to a French company was rejected in Parliament today.

Dewan Rakyat Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia rejected the Lembah Pantai MP (PKR) Nurul Izzah Anwar’s motion in his chambers this morning, as it did not adhere to Standing Order 23(1)(h).

The Standing Order states: (more…)

June 1, 2012

The Scorpene scandal and the long arm of the law

Scorpène Class Malaysian Navy submarine "Tun Razak" in the shipyard of Navantia-Cartagena (Spain) few days prior to its delivery. (© Outissnn | Wiki Commons)

Andrew Khoo

WHEN it comes to an issue like corruption, nations have long since accepted that it cannot be combated single-handedly.  A significant milestone in cooperation was when the General Assembly of the United Nations (UNGA) in New York passed the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) on 31 Oct 2003. Shortly after, Malaysia signed the UNCAC on 9 Dec 2003.  The UNCAC came into force on 14 Dec 2005. We then ratified it on 24 Sept 2008.

As a party to the UNCAC, how well do our government ministers understand Malaysia’s obligations under this international treaty and local laws on international cooperation on criminal matters? Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s recent snubbing of the inquiry by a French court into the Scorpene submarines scandal suggest ignorance, at the very least. (more…)

July 22, 2011

Scorpene lawyer arrested

Tashny Sukumaran

Prominent French human rights lawyer William Bourdon has been detained by immigration officers at KLIA.

The lawyer had arrived here from Penang, where he spoke at an event organised by rights group Suaram regarding the controversial Scorpene submarine deal.

He is scheduled to give another speech tonight in Petaling Jaya on the submarine scandal.

In June 2002, the Malaysian government signed an agreement with French DCNS and Spainish Navantia for the procurement of two Scorpene class submarines. (more…)

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