Malaysia’s second-highest court has upheld the jail sentence handed to former prime minister Najib Razak early this year, in the first of several criminal cases linking him to the 1MDB financial scandal.
The three-judge Court of Appeal ruled that the High Court’s decision to convict Najib of all seven counts in the trial last July was correct and upheld the 12-year jail term and 210 million ringgit (US$49.7 million) fine.
“We dismiss the motion and affirm the conviction on all sentences,” Judge Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil said.
The court allowed Najib bail pending appeal and agreed to let him free while he appealed to the Federal Court, Malaysia’s highest court.
Najib faced seven charges in the 1MDB case involving allegations of abuse of power, several counts of money laundering, and criminal breach of trust.
Najib’s activities linked to SRC International – a now-defunct subsidiary of the 1MDB state fund – were not in the “national interest” as Najib claimed.
“This is not something that can be said to have been done in the national interest. There is no national interest here. Just national embarrassment,” Judge Abdul Karim told the court.
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