KUALA LUMPUR, May 31 — Jonathan Laidlaw, a Queen’s Counsel (QC) from the United Kingdom seeks to represent Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in the former premier’s appeal in the RM42 million SRC International Sdn Bhd case.
The notice of originating motion involving the UK lawyer was filed by law firm Messrs Shafee & Co at the Kuala Lumpur High Court today, which was also the deadline to file it.
According to a copy of the application made available to the media today, he sought to be admitted and enrolled to practice in the High Court in Malaya or Peninsular Malaysia to appear as Najib’s lead counsel in the SRC appeals at the Federal Court and all other causes or matters related hereto.
One of the reasons for Laidlaw’s application was stated as being that Najib’s SRC appeal at the Federal Court will involve serious, complex and/or novel issues related to several branches of criminal and civil laws, practice and evidence, the constitutional rights of the appellant, the conduct of proceedings by the prosecution, the adjudication of criminal cases by a trial court and the administration of a Criminal Justice system.
Another reason stated was that Najib wishes to engage his professional services to act as his lead counsel in the SRC appeal and that the law firm and lawyer representing the accused Messrs Shafee & Co and Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah had given these instructions to Laidlaw.
It also stated that another reason as being that Laidlaw possesses special qualifications, experience, and expertise which is not available among lawyers in Malaysia, for the purposes of Najib’s SRC appeal at the Federal Court.
On Jan 25, the law firm Messrs Shafee & Co submitted a six-page letter to the secretariat of Chief Justice Tun Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat on Najib’s intention to appoint a QC to assist Najib in complex issues and legal questions in his SRC appeal at the apex court.
On April 29, the Federal Court fixed 10 days in August to hear Najib’s final bid against his conviction and jail sentence for misappropriation of RM42 million in SRC International funds.
On Dec 8, 2021, the Court of Appeal upheld Najib’s conviction and the 12-year jail sentence, and the RM210 million fine for misappropriating RM42 million belonging to SRC International.
Judge Datuk Abdul Karim Abdul Jalil, who presided with Datuk Has Zanah Mehat and Datuk Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera unanimously dismissed Najib’s appeal against the High Court’s decision on July 28, 2020.
The Federal Court would be the final avenue for the Pekan MP to appeal against his sentence and conviction involving the SRC International case.