Investigate if there is basis, says lawyer

16 Jan 2024 12:30pm
Lawyer Mohamed Haniff Khatri Abdulla - BERNAMA FILE PIX
Lawyer Mohamed Haniff Khatri Abdulla - BERNAMA FILE PIX

SHAH ALAM - Authorities including the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) have the responsibility to launch investigations when there are certain basis to a matter.

However, lawyer Mohamed Haniff Khatri Abdulla said it was deemed as an offence when authorities simply opened an investigation just to find fault in others.

"This involved the old cases especially the ones that are more than 10 years.

"The investigation involving former finance minister Tun Daim Zainuddin is a case which was more than 25 years ago. The same goes to the investigations conducted around 1990 and 2000, these are cases which happened a long time ago.

"For these cases, in terms of law, evidence that could be accepted by the court is needed.

"In long-standing cases, (obtaining the evidence) is difficult, especially those involving commercial crimes such as corruption, abuse of power and so on," he told Sinar.

Haniff said the sequence of the usage of funds and banking statements among others must be obtained to be presented in court.

"However, in commercial cases, according to our existing legal system, the bank should have disposed of banking documents that are more than six years old as there is no obligation to retain them.

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"So how can the authorities claim they have the right to conduct investigations into past cases when the basis for the investigation is difficult to obtain, to the point of being nearly impossible?," he said.

Meanwhile, Haniff said the act of opening an investigation just to find the basis can lead to accusations that the authorities were seemingly following the direction of the executive, namely the Prime Minister.

"It will give a negative perception not only to the Prime Minister, but also to the authorities.

"As legal practitioners, we closely examine what is currently being done. What we see is that there seems to be undue interference by the executive which is Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim as the Prime Minister, and it seems like the MACC allows themselves to be wrongly influenced by the Prime Minister.

"That is wrong. We are going about two or three steps back," he said.

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