Former UMNO vice president Isa Samad acquitted and discharged of corruption involving RM3 million

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PUTRAJAYA:The former UMNO Vice-President Tan Sri Mohd. Isa Abdul Samad, had been acquitted and discharged today (6th March) by the Court of Appeal of nine corruption charges involving RM3 million over Felda Invstment Corp’s acquisition of Merdeka Palace Hotel & Suites (MPHS) in Kuching Sarawak.

The verdict made by a panel of three judges led by Datuk Vazeer Alam Mydin Meerra had uninamously put aside the 2021 High Court conviction.

In the judgement Vazeer said, in the Kuala Lumpur High Court trial, the 21st prosecution witness (SP21) at that time was the special officer to Mohd. Isa, Muhammad Zahid Md. Arip told the judge that the word “salam” from Isa was a sign asking for money.

However Vazeer Alam in the meeting with Datuk Ahmad Zaidi Ibrahim and Datuk SM Komathy Suppiah said, there was no evidence showing that there was such an understanding from Isa as the appellant and SP21 to use such code.

“SP21 told that the appellant gave “salam” before every transaction and he (Muhammad Zahid) then agreed that the appellant did not give “salam” as a sign of every transaction.

“We found that there was a contradiction in the answer that was given by SP21,” he said.
Judge Vazeer said, the sign to SP21 was said to request for payment that had to be made by the former member of board of director Gegasan Abadi Properties Sdn. Bhd. Ikhwan Zaidel (SP16) and the trial judge did not evaluate it correctly.

He added, the High Court judge should evaluate the answer from SP21 when cross-examination as it was very important that could help the judge in the trial to study the credibility, consistency and the accuracy of the information.

“It was more important when SP21 told the amount agreed to be paid by SP16 was RM3 million, however when the amount was mentioned in the nine charges, it was more than RM3 million.

“There was no reasonable explanation given by SP21 for the contradiction,” he said.
He added, SP16 in his statement on 24th Oct.2019, told the court that whenever SP21 gave “salam” the witness understood the matter as a sign that Isa needed money.
Judge Vazeer added, based on the witness statement, SP16 said in every meeting among them only SP21 came.

Earlier the Kuala Lumpur High Court on 3rd Feb.2021 had found Mohd. Isa guilty on nine counts of corruption involving RM3 million over the acquisition of Merdeka Palace Hotel & Suites in Kuching, Sarawak, as reported by Sinar Harian.

The offence was alleged to have taken place at Level 49, Menara Felda, Platinum Park, No.11, Persiaran KLCC, Kuala Lumpur between 21st July until 11th December 2015.
The judge, Datuk Mohd. Nazlan Mohd. Ghazali (currently court of appeal judge) sentenced the alleged to six years jail for each offence amounting to 54 years and fine RM15.45 million or jail 18 years failing to pay the fine.

However Mohd. Isa has to serve only six years in jail when the court ordered that all the jail sentences run concurrently.






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