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Monday, January 13, 2020

Lokman Adam fails to set aside contempt proceedings



Umno supreme council member Lokman Noor Adam has failed to set aside leave granted by the High Court in Kuala Lumpur to Attorney-General Tommy Thomas to commence contempt proceedings against him.
High Court judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah this morning dismissed Lokman’s application to set aside the leave.
Among the main points of Lokman’s (above) setting aside bid was that the show cause notice issued to him by the Legal and Prosecution Division of the MACC headquarters was is defective because the division has no power or jurisdiction to do so, and that only the court has such power and jurisdiction to issue the notice.
“The notice to show cause may be issued by a party other than the court such, as in this case.

“If the Rules Committee (which drafted Order 52 of the Rules of Court 2012 under which contempt application procedures are laid out) intended for the show cause notice to be initiated by the court (only), it would have stated it in no uncertain terms,” Justice Sequerah ruled.
In regard to whether the notice was defective in law due to a lack of particulars, the judge pointed out that a perusal of the AG’s committal cause papers show that Lokman’s alleged contemptuous acts were spelt out clearly in the papers.

“Perusal of the Statement (AG’s contempt cause papers) under Order 52 leave no doubt in the mind of the person addressed (Lokman) on the object and purpose, of the person (allegedly) not only intimidated a witness (Amhari Efendi Nazaruddin, above) at the trial but other witnesses in the case mentioned.
“In this case, which consists of (Lokman’s alleged acts of) a video interview and lodging of a police report, were clearly spelt out in the statement (AG’s cause papers).
“The contempt (application) was brought to the notice of the respondent and there was no prejudice in the (AG’s contempt) application,” Justice Sequerah ruled before dismissing the setting-aside application. Lokman was present during proceedings.
Amhari Efendi is a key witness in the RM2.28 billion 1MDB trial of former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak.
Justice Sequerah then set March 13 to hear the merits of the AG’s contempt application, and set Feb 21 for case management of the matter.
The judge also dismissed an oral application by Lokman’s counsel, Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, to stay today’s ruling pending an appeal to the Court of Appeal.
DPP Ahmad Akram Gharib appeared for the prosecution in today’s proceedings.
The court on Jan 9 set today for the decision on Lokman's application to set aside the leave obtained by Thomas to initiate committal proceedings against Lokman.
The attorney-general was granted leave by Justice Sequerah to initiate the proceedings against Lokman for having allegedly intimidating a key witness in Najib’s RM2.28 billion 1MDB trial, on two occasions on Sept 25 last year.
The witness is Amhari Efendi, who was then a special officer to the former prime minister.
It was alleged that on that date (Sept 25), Lokman in a video interview, uttered words constituting an express or implied threat against Amhari Efendi.
It was also alleged that on the same day, Lokman lodged a police report against Amhari Efendi, who was the eighth prosecution witness, in relation to his testimony in Najib’s ongoing 1MDB trial. - Mkini

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