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Thursday, January 23, 2020

Yoursay: Kudos to the judge for upholding Najib’s entitlement

YOURSAY | ‘In allowing the application, Nazlan has protected the integrity of the trial.’
Muhibah 76: With the presence of the defence and prosecution handwriting experts, at least everyone will find out for sure if it were former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak’s signatures on the documents.

Even if the experts offer differing conclusions or are unable to determine if it were really Najib’s signatures, it would not be a defining moment in the trial.
The authenticity of the signatures isn’t the smoking gun in the SRC International trial as there is a lot of other evidence available.
Najib’s defence team is just clutching at straws in its request for the handwriting expert. It is more of a time-wasting technique to prolong the trial.
Vijay 47: It is a good decision by High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali to allow Najib to call his own expert witness to examine the signatures.
In allowing the application by the defence counsel, Nazlan has protected the integrity of the trial and ensured that in the event of any appeal should the accused is found guilty, the defence cannot claim that they were prevented from submitting all favourable evidence.
And obviously, the prosecution is also permitted to bring in its own expert. This would make for fun times in court.
Yes, the judge was right, but the question of the authenticity of Najib’s signature is not some sudden issue raised by the prosecution. It was there all along when the relevant documents were being verified.
Worse for Najib, at that point he had not raised any challenge; he should have stated then that he was not sure and needed the assistance of a hand-writing expert. Instead, he had actually agreed that the signatures were his.
Perhaps the judge allowed the application in order to nip in the bud any future protest by the defence.
Nevertheless, he had also suggested in his judgment that the credibility of the defence could be adversely affected, implying that convenient afterthoughts are not welcome.
But why would Najib’s counsel want to delay the proceedings? In the hope of a change in government and the return of the judiciary from the past?
Sinner: It is the correct decision by the judge to allow Najib’s request at this juncture.
If Najib is convicted later, we do not want him to win on appeal and have his conviction overturned by the Court of Appeal due to this small issue concerning the handwriting expert.
3D Waffle: Yes, as much as I hate the delay and drama, it is the proper and right decision by the judge in accommodating the defence’s request.
Tok Jangut: I am surprised by the ruling to allow Najib to bring onboard his own hand-writing expert.
The defence had not challenged the prosecution witnesses who said the signatures were Najib’s. That should have been the end of the matter.
Cogito Ergo Sum: I think it was a fair ruling by the judge. After this, the prosecution can also call its own experts.
Under BN rule, this would not have happened. All things would have been weighed against the accused, who would have been presumed guilty already.
Najib is fortunate that Pakatan Harapan is in power now.
Honma: The judge has made it clear that Najib must call the Australian handwriting expert to verify the signatures on or before Feb 3, 2020.
It is wise of the judge to allow the accused the opportunity to verify his own signatures. The accused is putting a rope on his own neck if it is confirmed the signatures are genuine. Good luck to him.
Citizen: Indeed, it was a correct and just decision by judge Nazlan.
It is for the defence to raise everything that it thinks is relevant in proving Najib’s innocence and it is up to the judge to weigh that evidence and decide on its relevancy and credibility.
Unlike alibi evidence wherein a notice must be given to the prosecution at least 14 days before the hearing, there is no such requirement for bringing a document examiner for this matter.
OZ Land: In my opinion, the trial judge is too accommodating and is allowing the trial to drag on for too long.
Every party involved should work on completing the trial fast. The rakyat want justice served.
Fair Mind: In the entire scheme of things, the judge allowing an expert to examine the authenticity of Najib's signature will shorten the trial; not lengthen it.
After this trial, there might be appeals made to the higher courts.
The judge is ensuring that the trial proceeds fairly and in future, there is no "trial within a trial" on the authenticity of the corporate meetings and documents, and that Najib has been denied a fair trial.
Fortis Est Veritas: If Najib’s signatures are found to be “fakes”, does this mean that the authenticity of Najib's signatures on other government documents made during his administration can be challenged by interested parties?
If that is allowed, then some of the treaties, directives and documents of the then Najib administration could be declared as legally invalid. Are we going down a rabbit hole? - Mkini

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