KUALA LUMPUR, 28 April 2009: After five years and 45 witnesses, Dr Hamimah Idruss who was charged with receiving RM41.33 million from illegal activities, will have to be retried.
Sessions Court Judge SM Komathy Suppiah ordered the trial to start again on 27 May because the previous judge, Akhtar Tahir, has been posted to the High Court.
Hamimah’s case received wide media coverage in early 2004 since she was the first to be charged under the Anti-Money Laundering Act 2001. The case also involved several witnesses from overseas.
She was alleged to have committed the offence in April 2003 and if convicted, she is liable to a fine of not more than RM5 million or imprisonment not exceeding five years.
She was also charged with 10 counts of abetment in document forgery involving AS$12 million (RM45.6 milion).
Meanwhile at the High Court, Judicial Commissioner Zainal Azman Ab Aziz dismissed Hamimah’s application to transfer her money totalling RM32.6 million which was confiscated by the police to an account under the name of the Kuala Lumpur court administrator.
“This case is a specific case and the accused was charged under the Anti-Money Laundering Act which is a specific Act.
“The Sessions Court judge has erred in his decision because the court is bound by Section 50(1) of the Anti-Money Laundering Act,” he said, quashing the Sessions Court’s earlier ruling concerning release of the money. — Bernama